Police have taken a 42-year-old man into custody after more than 50 shots were fired at a Southern California shopping mall, forcing mass panic and a full lock down.
According to Newport Beach police, multiple shots were fired in the area of a Macy’s department store at the Fashion Island mall Saturday around 4:30pm in the upscale affluent coastal community.
Police arrested Sarinana Gurrola on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, said Kathy Lowe, a spokeswoman for the Newport Beach Police Department.
‘With what happened in Connecticut, we were freaking out,’ Shopper Dena Nassef told the LA Times. ‘It was like crazy, people leaving stores.’
More than 50 rounds were allegedly fired by Gurrola who was arrested by officers on bike patrol as he was trying to exit the parking lot in a white Volvo, a Newport Beach Police Department spokesman told the newspaper.
Shoppers flew into a panic, hiding in dressing rooms, inside a movie theater and ran for their cars. One woman was injured in the panic.
A YouTube user posted a terrifying video taken from the parking lot in which repeated shots can be heard.
‘I couldn’t see who was shooting, but I started to take video in the direction the shots came from while standing behind the car you see in the foreground,’ the caption said. ‘My video catches the last two clips he shot and I could finally see him when he shot off the last clip.’
Shopper Joe Rubbinaccio told NBC4 he was on the lowest floor of Macy’s when he heard shouting.
‘I heard somebody yelling,’ Rubbinaccio said. ‘It sounds like an employee. He was saying, ‘Lock the store down!’ And he was yelling, ‘Don’t panic. There’s been a shooting,” Rubbinaccio said. ‘At that point, you kind of freeze. Your heart skips a beat. … You just panic, you don’t know what to do.’
Rubbinaccio said he saw many people running, and had heard one person had been injured in the rush to escape.
The incident comes as many across the country were on high alert following the mass shooting Friday at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut that killed 28 people, including 20 children.
Preston Waters | Elite.