21 November 2020 02:42
— Eight people were injured in a shooting Friday at a suburban Milwaukee mall and police said they were still seeking the suspect. Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber gave no motive for the attack at the Mayfair Mall in a brief update about three hours after the 2:50 p.m. incident near an entrance to the Macy's store. He said the extent of injuries to the eight — seven adults and one teenager — was unknown, but all were alive. "Preliminary statements from witnesses indicate that the shooter is a white male in his 20s or 30s," Weber told reporters. The chief called the mall an active crime scene and asked people to continue to stay away.
He said the mall would remain closed until further notice. Witnesses told WISN-TV that they had heard what they believed to be eight to 12 gunshots. Some people remained in the mall while police searched for a suspect. The station interviewed several people outside the mall who said they had friends sheltering in stores inside. Jill Wooley was inside Macy's with her 79-year-old mother when they heard eight to 12 gun shots just outside the store entrance.
"We heard the first shot fired and knew immediately it was a gunshot," Wooley told CBS58 in Milwaukee. Wooley said she didn't see anyone but the shots were "very close." She added that they ran in the opposite direction to the basement of the store, where they then hid. Trish Cox's 19-year-old nephew works at Finish Line sporting goods store. She said she was worried because the store's phone wasn't being answered. She was waiting frantically while FBI agents cleared the mall. An agent who wouldn't give his name said the mall was being "methodically" cleared. Mall operator Brookfield Properties said in a statement they were "disheartened and angered that our guests and tenants were subject to this violent incident today." They declined further comment. The Mayfair Mall was the site of a February shooting in which a city police officer, Joseph Mensah, shot and killed Alvin Cole, a Black 17-year-old. The mall was the target of sporadic protests over several months in the wake of the shooting. Eight people were injured in a shooting Friday afternoon at Mayfair Mall in Wauwatosa. Seven adults and one teenager were transported to an unnamed area hospital after the shooting around 2:50 p.m., Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber said in a media briefing shortly before 6 p.m. The extent of the injuries for each person is unknown, Weber said, but no fatalities were reported as of 6 p.m. The shooting happened near the northwest entrance to Macy's, Weber said. When law enforcement arrived, the shooter was no longer there. The mall is closed until further notice, and law enforcement is asking the public to stay away from the mall as it is still an active crime scene, Weber said. "The crime scene is active, and we ask members of the public to remain away from the area and be patient so that our law enforcement personnel may secure the scene and investigate," Weber said. People in the mall are being released. People needing to reunify with loved ones can go to the reunification area at the At Home store, 3201 N. People walk with shopping bags in front of Mayfair Mall on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020, in Wauwatosa. A statement released early Friday evening from Froedtert Hospital says two nearby hospitals were preparing to possibly accept patients from the shooting. "Shortly after 3 p.m. Friday, Froedtert Hospital and Children's Wisconsin were notified of a shooting at Mayfair Mall. Additional questions should be directed to law enforcement," according to Nalissa Wienke, media relations associate for Froedtert Hospital. The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner tweeted at 3:42 p.m. it was not responding to the shooting at the mall. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported commanders at the scene asked the mall to make an announcement that people in the building should shelter in place. Several law enforcement agencies responded to the shooting, including the FBI and police from Wauwatosa, Waukesha, West Milwaukee and Franklin. Late Friday afternoon, a WPR reporter on scene counted a minimum of 20 responding vehicles in one section of the parking lot, with about a dozen or more just in the area near Macy's. Another WPR reporter on scene spoke to a man whose wife works at the mall and was inside at the time of the shooting. He told WPR his wife texted him saying shots were fired near Macy's. Law enforcement vehicles are parked with their lights on in front of Mayfair Mall on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020, in Wauwatosa. Steve Humphrie's 21-year-old daughter Nadia Mitchell-Humphrie was working at a Lenscrafters in the mall when shots were fired. She texted her dad as soon as it happened saying the shooting started at Macy's and continued into the hallway. Humphrie sped to the mall to meet her. It's a bad situation," he said. Mitchell-Humphrie was held in the mall for some time while officers searched the building, but the two ultimately reunited at around 5:20 p.m. Brookfield Properties owns the Mayfair Mall and released a statement Friday evening. "We are disheartened and angered that our guests and tenants were subject to this violent incident today," Lindsay Kahn, director of public relations, said. "We are thankful for our partners at the Wauwatosa Police Department and we are cooperating with them as their investigation develops. At this time, we need to direct you to WPD for comment."