OUWA – Active shooter reported at Mayfair mall, 8 injured and brought to the hospital. A gunman opened fire at Mayfair mall in Wauwatosa Friday afternoon, wounding seven adults and one teenager, officials said.
Witnesses described the shooter as a white male in his 20s or 30s, Wauwatosa captain Barry Weber said at a press conference just before 6 p.m. Investigators are working to work out the shooter’s identity.
“When emergency personnel arrived, the shooter was not at the scene,” Weber said.
Asked if the shooter was still within the mall, the chief replied: “We do not know that.”
“The extent of their injuries is unknown at this point,” Weber said of the victims. “Everybody was alive at that point, though, so there have not been any fatalities that I’m conscious of .”
A hospital spokeswoman said Froedtert Hospital and Children’s Wisconsin were notified of a shooting at Mayfair mall shortly after 3 p.m. and both hospitals’ trauma teams were prepared to receive patients.
The shooting occurred about 2:50 p.m. at the northwest mall entrance, near Macy’s. Hours later, officers continued to clear the mall and had designated the reception Store, 3201 North Mayfair Road, as a reunification area for those that had been inside the mall.
Witnesses inside the mall reported hearing multiple gunshots about 3 p.m. that sent people fleeing for the exits or to other locations where they might safely shelter in situ. Reporters at the scene and news helicopters captured video of a minimum of four people being loaded into ambulances within the parking zone.
More than 40 police vehicles and 100 officers and agents from local and federal enforcement — some in tactical gear and holding shields — might be seen outside the mall Friday evening.
“We ask members of the general public to stay far away from the world, and twiddling my thumbs in order that our enforcement personnel may secure the scene and investigate,” Weber said.
Later Friday, mall representatives released a press release thanking Wauwatosa police and confirming the mall was closed.
“We are disheartened and angered that our guests and tenants were subject to the present violent incident today,” the statement read.
Witness: ‘It was very terrifying’
Two hours after shots rang out, the world around the mall was crowded with enforcement officers and anxious friends and relations of those who had been inside.
Waseem Dilshad said his uncle was performing at a kiosk near Macy’s when he was shot within the leg twice and wasn’t in critical condition.
Dilshad’s cousin was also performing at the kiosk and saw the shooting happen. He was on the phone with Dilshad at the time.
“He started cursing and yelling and said, ‘I’m getting to call you back, there’s blood everywhere,” Dilshad said.
His uncle was taken to Froedtert Hospital and his cousin remained inside the mall, Dilshad said shortly before 5 p.m.
Cecilia Guerrero, 20, of West Milwaukee, took cover inside the OFFLINE by Aerie store together with her sister, Anahi, a family of three and 4 store associates.
Guerrero said she had been within the locked room since around 2:50 p.m.
“It was very terrifying,” Guerrero said. “I was very nervous at the start once we didn’t know what was happening. But now that I’m safe and nobody can get in, I’m OK. But it had been very freaky and there was some panic.”
Guerrero said albeit these shootings are “more common” she didn’t think it might happen there.
Samantha Paul, 24, had just walked through the second set of doors of Mayfair when a stranger grabbed her arm and said, “Leave. there’s a shooter.”
“I was shaking and crying, and that I am still crying,” Paul said. “I am so thankful she grabbed me.”
As soon as she began to run, she said that it appeared like many people were running toward their cars, where many tried to flee et al. shouting at the police to ask what was happening.
“I never thought I might be during this situation,” she said. “I love Mayfair. Even with the protests, I still felt comfortable going there. (Now), i do not want to travel there alone again. it had been frightening that this happened at 3 p.m.”
The shooting occurred near Macy’s
Gordon Lugauer was within the back office of his parlor game Barrister store when he heard gunfire.
It was “sudden and abrupt,” he said.
He returned to the front of the shop where his staff and a few six customers had dropped to the ground.
No one inside was injured, but he saw multiple people wounded outside his store, on the primary floor of the mall near Macy’s.
A person who had been waiting to enter the shop due to social distancing rules was shot within the leg. Lugauer and his employees helped the injured person into the shop to attend for paramedics.
Jill Wooley was inside Macy’s together with her 79-year-old mother when she said she heard eight to 12 shots coming from inside the mall.
They dropped to the bottom for a flash then run within the other way.
“Unfortunately all folks have considered what we might neutralize that situation. Unfortunately that kicked in and that we made it to a secure place,” she said.
When Wooley and her mother got out of the mall she said her mom was surprised and the police gave her a blanket.
“All of this has not sunk in quite yet,” Wooley said. “ i feel there’s a particular amount of shock that’s happening .”
Latest in a string of shootings
The shooting at the mall marks a minimum of the fourth time this year multiple people are wounded by gunfire during a single incident within the Milwaukee area.
In February, five workers at MolsonCoors’ Milwaukee brewery were fatally shot by a 51-year-old co-worker who then shot and killed himself.
Two months later, five people were shot and killed inside a Milwaukee range in what police described as an act of family violence. Christopher Stokes called 911 and told a dispatcher he had “just massacred my whole family” with a shotgun, consistent with court records. Stokes has pleaded acquitted by reason of mental illness or defect.
In September, seven people were wounded when a car pulled up to a crowd of about 100 mourners gathering for a funeral on Milwaukee’s side and someone inside the vehicle opened fire.
The victims — three women and 4 men — survived their injuries. The funeral was for a recent homicide victim.
Mass shootings typically are defined by the federal as an event having four fatal victims, but other, broader definitions have included shootings with a minimum of four injuries.
The shooting on Friday is also a minimum of the third time gunfire has been reported in or around the mall this year.
In February, Wauwatosa policeman Joseph Mensah shot and killed 17-year-old Alvin Cole within the mall parking zone after police say Cole fired an attempt while running from police. Prosecutors didn’t charge Mensah with the teen’s death and therefore the officer has since signed a separation agreement with the force.
Last month, an individual suffered a “self-inflicted gunshot wound to the leg” within the parking zone during an event that seemed to be drug-related, consistent with Tosa police.
Mayfair Mall in Wauwatosa has quite 150 stores and kiosks on two main levels. The mall, originally inbuilt in the 1950s, has quite 1 million square feet of retail space. it’s anchored by Macy’s emporium on the north end of the mall.
Mayfair is managed by Brookfield Properties, a worldwide land services company based in NY .