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    NewsUSAEl Paso mall shooting: At a store next door, 23 people were killed in another mass attack in 2019

    El Paso mall shooting: At a store next door, 23 people were killed in another mass attack in 2019

    (CNN) — One person was killed and three others were injured in a shooting Wednesday night at a shopping mall in El Paso, Texas, police said. The shooting caused customers to flee or take refuge in a community scarred by another massacre that occurred three years ago at a nearby store.

    Two people, both men, were in custody after the shooting inside the Cielo Vista Shopping Center, acting El Paso Police Chief Peter Pacillas said Wednesday night. Police have not commented on possible motives.

    “It was chaotic. The people fled. They were scared,” said police sergeant Roberto Gomez.

    Surveillance video from a bar inside the mall caught more than a dozen people running away from the sound of gunshots and, later, paramedics pushing a stretcher.

    All four people shot were men, Pacillas said. Two of the injured were taken to El Paso University Medical Center in critical condition, the hospital told CNN. The third injured person was also hospitalized, Gomez said, but his condition is unknown.

    Texas shooting

    Members of the police gather in front of the Cielo Vista shopping center after a shooting, in El Paso, Texas, on Wednesday. (Credit: Jose Luis Gonzalez/Reuters)

    The memory of a previous massacre and more shootings in the US.

    The mall where the shooting occurred is next to a Walmart where a 2019 shooting killed 23 people and injured nearly two dozen others. Last week, the 24-year-old shooter pleaded guilty to 90 federal counts as part of a plea deal.

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    This Wednesday’s shooting is yet another example of shootings destroying the sense of safety many Americans once felt in public spaces, such as malls, supermarkets and schools.

    So far this year, there have been more than 70 mass shootings in the United States, according to the Gun Violence Archive. Both CNN and the file define a “mass shooting” as an attack that injured or killed four or more people, not including the shooter.

    Robert González was at the mall on Wednesday and during the 2019 shooting, he told CNN. He saw people “running for the exit” on Wednesday, he said, and video he took inside the mall shows several stores had their security doors closed. Outside, a second video shows police gathered at the entrance.

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    “I was working (at the mall) the last time this happened with the Walmart shooting, so it brought back bad memories,” Gonzalez said.

    Investigators preliminarily believe the shooting occurred around the food court on the upper level of the mall, Gomez said.

    Texas shootingTexas shooting

    Law enforcement officers walk in the mall parking lot after the shooting. (Andres Leighton/AP)

    Marie Hall had just entered her shift at a salad bar in the food court when she heard gunshots, she told CNN affiliate KFOX. She ran to the back of the restaurant and hid in a walk-in cooler with another employee and two customers, she said.

    “Nothing prepares you for that,” the woman told the affiliated network. “I really didn’t feel safe (going to work) at first because of the shooting in 2019… It’s definitely going to be harder to go to work.”

    An off-duty police officer who was working security at one of the mall’s stores was able to respond to the scene within three minutes and arrest one person, Pacillas said. He did not say when, where or how the second person was detained.

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    Multiple law enforcement agencies, including El Paso Police, Texas Department of Public Safety, and US Border Patrol, responded to the scene and worked into the night to clear the building and begin a preliminary investigation. the police said.

    The FBI, which is helping with the investigation, has set up a website for people to submit photos and videos of the incident.

    Even some community members who were not present during Wednesday’s shooting feel that the event has reopened old wounds.

    Albert Hernández, whose sister Maribel and brother-in-law Leo Campos were killed in the 2019 shooting, told KFOX that he feels political leaders “do not accept the full scope of the situation” of gun violence and are “insensitive to what is happening ”.

    “We felt the same feelings coming back to us as the day of the Walmart shooting. Everything comes back and we ask ourselves, now what? How many people are going to get hurt? Hernandez said.

    — CNN’s Amanda Jackson, Sharif Paget, Andy Rose and Nicole Chavez contributed to this report.


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