12 injured in shooting at South Carolina mall, 3 ‘people of interest’ detained
Officials said on Saturday that a dozen people were injured during a shooting at a mall in Columbia, S.C.
There were no fatalities.
Columbia Police Chief William Holbrook told reporters that officials responded to multiple calls reporting gunfire at the Columbiana Centre shopping mall.
Ten people suffered gunshot wounds after multiple rounds were fired at the mall, including two who were considered in critical but stable condition. An additional two people were injured in a stampede, Holbrook said.
The ages of those who suffered gunshot wounds ranged between 15 years old and 73 years old.
Three people have been detained by police. Holbrook said that they were currently being considered “people of interest” and not “suspects,” though he noted that that could change. Holbrook emphasized that the information was very preliminary and that it is an active investigation.
Details regarding the three people detained were not immediately clear during the news conference, and Holbrook declined to provide information about their ages.
Holbrook also said that while it was still very early in the investigation, officials do not believe the shooting was random.
“We believe that [the] individuals that were armed knew each other, and there was some type of conflict that occurred that resulted in gunfire. This was not a situation where we had some random person show up at a mall” to fire a firearm and injure people, Holbrook said.
Holbrook said it was too early to know if the incident was gang-related and he could not provide any information on the weapons used.
“We’re asking that the public stay out of the area. As I said, it’s very active. We have a lot of the roads that are closed down, but we ask for continued cooperation with that,” the Columbia police chief said.
He said that law enforcement was still clearing the mall for people who remained sheltered in place.
“Today’s isolated, senseless act of violence is extremely upsetting and our thoughts are with everyone impacted. We are grateful for the quick response and continued support of our security team and our partners in law enforcement,” Columbiana Centre said in a statement, which was provided by the police.