The Mall in Columbia shooter has been identified by Maryland police, but investigators said they won’t yet release the name of the man who killed two others and himself on Saturday morning.
The shooting took place inside Columbia Mall in Howard County. Police said the suspect was found dead near ammunition and a gun, which witnesses describe as a shotgun. They also found a “crude” explosive device near the body.
Police said they tentatively identified the Mall in Columbia shooter, but would not release the man’s identity yet. Another media briefing scheduled for Sunday morning at 9:30 am.
Two people were killed in the shooting, who police identified as Brianna Benlolo, 21, of College Park, Maryland, and Tyler Johnson, 25. Both were employees of the Zumiez store where the shooting took place, police said.
The shooting left four other people injured, including one victim with a gunshot wound to the foot and three other people whose injuries were not directly related to the shooting. Police said one was a twisted ankle suffered while shoppers were fleeing the scene, and two other people suffered seizures.
Howard County Police Chief Bill McMahon said he could not speculate on the shooter’s motives and was unsure exactly how many shots were fired.
“We don’t know a motive yet,” McMahon said. “We are very confident that it was a single shooter, and there was not another shooter in the mall.”
But law enforcement sources later told news outlets that the shooting, which took place in a Zumiez store, may have been over domestic issues.
Witnesses said they heard were many gunshots.
“They just kept shooting and it didn’t stop,” said one shopper, who said she helped some children get to safety.
“I work in Cartoon Cuts; I was downstairs getting a tea for my boss,” she said. “And all of a sudden I heard… it sounded like someone dropped something. And all of a sudden I see people fall, three people fall to the ground. And all I see is people going down to the floor and running.
“I just saw everybody run, so I ran.”
Others described a chaotic scene during the shooting inside Columbia Mall.
“We just heard gunshots, and then this lady came into the store and said there’s a guy with a gun… Me and my friend just ran in the back room,” said another witness. “We were crying and we were just scared out of our minds, because our thought was that we were going to get shot.”
Police said Mall in Columbia shooting suspect died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.