Thursday 14 December 2017

Massive manhunt underway as gunman kills five in US shopping mall

Emergency responders at the scene, the suspect who is still at large
Emergency responders at the scene, the suspect who is still at large

Police in northwest Washington are conducting a manhunt for a gunman who opened fire in a mall, killing five people .

A man walked into the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington, about 65 miles (105 km) north of Seattle and began shooting at about 7 p.m. local time on Friday, Washington State Patrol spokesman Mark Francis said on Twitter.

Four women were killed in the attack in the mall's Macy's store cosmetics department, Francis told the New York Times.

Authorities initially said on social media four people were killed in the shooting. As authorities cleared the mall and assessed the situation, the number of dead was revised to three, according to several local and national media outlets.

Law enforcement officers work at the crime scene outside of Cascade Mall in Burlington, Wash., where several people were fatally shot on Friday, Sept. 23, 2016
Law enforcement officers work at the crime scene outside of Cascade Mall in Burlington, Wash., where several people were fatally shot on Friday, Sept. 23, 2016
Medics wait to gain access to the Cascade Mall after four people were shot dead in Burlington, Washington, U.S. September 24, 2016

Early on Saturday, the Times along with several other media outlets reported that the authorities had increased the number of dead again to four.

Local and state police officials were not immediately available for comment.

Law enforcement officers stand in front of the Macy's store at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Wash., where several people were fatally shot, Friday, Sept. 23, 2016
Law enforcement officers stand in front of the Macy's store at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Wash., where several people were fatally shot, Friday, Sept. 23, 2016

Harborview Medical Center in Seattle said in a statement that it was treating a man who was in critical condition from the shooting.

Francis said on Twitter that police and rescue workers carefully worked their way through the 434,000-square-foot (135,000 m) mall, clearing stores and evacuating shoppers some of whom, according to local media, locked themselves in dressing rooms.

Law enforcement officers stand in front of the Macy's department store at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Wash., where the Washington State Patrol reports a fatal shooting, Friday, Sept. 23, 2016
Law enforcement officers stand in front of the Macy's department store at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Wash., where the Washington State Patrol reports a fatal shooting, Friday, Sept. 23, 2016

He also said police were searching the area for the shooter, who was described as a "Hispanic male wearing gray" and last seen walking toward a nearby highway away from the mall.

Local authorities searched throughout the night for the gunman, believed to be armed with a rifle and warned residents to remain inside.

"Tragedy has struck in Washington tonight. Our hearts are in Burlington," Governor Jay Inslee said on Twitter.

The shooting comes less than a week after a man stabbed nine people at a mall in central Minnesota before being shot dead. The FBI is investigating that attack as a potential act of terrorism.

NBC News reported that Washington State Patrol had said that there was no indication of terrorism in the shooting in Burlington.

"At this time, the FBI has no information to suggest additional attacks planned in WA state," the agency said on Twitter.

Online Editors

Promoted Links

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editors Choice

Also in World News