A mall shooting video was released by New Jersey police on Friday, showing a gunman dressed in black firing shots into the ceiling.
Police released both 911 calls and video from the mall shooting that took place earlier this month at The Garden State Plaza in Paramus. Police said 20-year-old Richard Shoop of Teaneck, New Jersey, fired several times from a gun that had been modified to look like an AK-47 assault rifle.
The mall shooting video shows Shoop in a black motorcycle helmet, black clothes, and black gloves and carrying a gun and backpack. A store employee can be seen running for cover and closing the shop’s heavy glass doors as Shoop walks by.
Other shoppers were seen huddled together by a store entrance and then turning quickly to run for safety as they clutched each other.
Police initially started on a wide-ranging search for the suspect in the New Jersey mall shooting, including a visit to his home. But Shoop’s body was later found in an interior hallway in the lower level of the mall.
Witnesses said the gunman indicated that he had no intention of hurting anyone, and they believed that his intention was to commit suicide. Police later said that Shoop did not aim any of his shots at employees or shoppers, and the mall shooting video shows that his only shots were fired into the ceiling.
The mall shooting prompted a quick response from New Jersey police. They received so many 911 calls within the minutes after the shooting that they added 10 dispatchers to answer calls and even routed some to places as far away as New York City and Pike County, Pennsylvania.
One of the 911 transcripts mentions this enormous police response. The caller tells the 911 dispatcher that there are now police officers in the mall, and asks if it is safe to approach them.
“There are many, many SWAT teams,” she tells him. “Just stay where you are until police come and get you. Probably half the state police department has sent help.”
The mall shooting video can be seen here.