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1 killed, another wounded in Omaha mall shooting that sends shoppers running

OMAHA, NEB. — A shooting at a Nebraska mall left one person dead and another wounded as terrified shoppers ran for cover.

Authorities believe the shooting at Westroads Mall in Omaha was an isolated incident, and not a random attack.

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Police determined the suspects had fled the scene after searching the mall, according to Omaha police Lt. Neal Bonacci. Officers first gave the “all clear” around 1 p.m. — about an hour after multiple shots were fired, The Omaha World-Herald reports.

One man was fatally shot, while a woman suffered a leg wound, Bonacci said.

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Law enforcement directs traffic away after a shooting at Westroads Mall on Saturday, April 17, 2021 in Omaha, Neb.
Law enforcement directs traffic away after a shooting at Westroads Mall on Saturday, April 17, 2021 in Omaha, Neb. (CHRIS MACHIAN, THE WORLD-HERALD/AP)

The gunfire caused panic, as people fled from the main section of the mall, according to a World-Herald reporter who was in the food court when the shooting happening.

“It was shocking,” said Alyha Wills, who was in Forever 21 with her sister when other shoppers asked if she’d heard the gunfire.

She then fled, saying, “I could hear it; it was close.”

Officials did not immediately release additional details about the suspects or what prompted the shooting.

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This is the second reported shooting at Westroads Mall in a little more than a month. Omaha Police Officer Jeffrey Wittstruck was shot at four times by a 21-year-old man who was accused of shoplifting T-shirts from J.C. Penney on March 12. Wittstruck survived.

The J.C. Penney is about 200 feet (60 meters) from Von Maur , where a gunman killed eight people and himself in 2007.

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