Murray police said the shooting was “possibly gang-related,” and were looking for three people who fled the mall in light-colored hoodies or sweatshirts and dark pants.
Two people were wounded. Murray Police Det. Kenny Bass told reporters that a man and a woman in their 20s were taken to Intermountain Medical Center.
The man was in critical condition, and the woman was taken to the hospital in serious condition, was treated, then released from the hospital.
“We do not know their identities, we have descriptions of them,” he said of the suspects.
Police and mall officials said the shooting happened outside the mall’s east side, but witnesses and video posted on social media recorded loud bangs and people running inside the mall.
Images shared with FOX 13 showed police officers with guns drawn running through the mall as incredulous looking shoppers watched.
— Ben Winslow (@BenWinslow) January 13, 2019
As police responded, shoppers and store employees locked themselves in rooms.
— Allison Croghan (@AllisonCroghan) January 13, 2019
One of those in the mall at the time of the shooting was an organizer of the March for Our Lives anti-gun violence march. As she hid, she posted this to Twitter:
I am currently hiding as the police look for the shooter. I am in the mall. I am terrified!! This should NEVER happen! https://t.co/jJN47Xx5YT
— Ermiya Fanaeian (@ErmiyaFanaeian) January 13, 2019
Others were able to flee the mall before police locked it down.
— Dejan Eskic (@EskicDejan) January 13, 2019
Det. Bass said people who were evacuated would be able to reunite with loved ones by the Taco Bell near 6100 S. State Street.
He said three people, described as being in their 20s, were being sought in connection. Neighborhoods near the mall reported seeing a large police presence as well. A reverse 911 call was sent out to residents who live near the mall following the incident, dispatch officials stated.
People were seen leaving the mall under police escorts with their hands in the air.
— Erin Cox (@erincoxnews) January 13, 2019
Det. Bass said mall employees would be allowed to return to pick up items left behind.
The Fashion Place Mall said in a statement posted on Twitter the mall was closed:
“We are very saddened by the incident that happened outside our shopping center this afternoon. We are grateful to our security and the quick response of our partners at the Murray Police Department,” it said. “At this time we are directing all inquiries to the Murray Police Department. This is a developing investigation and we are providing whatever aide necessary to law enforcement. Nothing is more important than the safety and well-being of our guests and tenants. The shopping center is currently closed.”
In a statement to FOX 13, Utah Governor Gary Herbert’s office said it was watching the situation closely.
“Our hearts go out to the injured, and we are troubled to see the fear created by this senseless shooting,” said governor’s spokesman Paul Edwards.
“We are grateful for the rapid and professional response of our public safety officers from around the valley to this unfortunate incident.”