On the day of the attack, one employee at the Allen Premium Outlets recalled hearing constant gunfire as she rushed from the mall.
Andria Gaither had just returned from her lunch break at 3:30 p.m. local time on Saturday when the shooting began, according to CNN.
Gaither explained that she was in the rear of the store when she observed two young girls hiding in the clothing rack and fitting room. She claimed her employer was directing clients to the back of the store to escape the firing.
She momentarily concealed in a changing room before decided to flee out the emergency escape.
“I could hear the gunshots very close, very loud, nonstop,” Gaither said, describing how she ran the full length of the mall to get off of the property. “It sounded like a very powerful gun. Every gunshot sounded like an explosion.”
Gaither claimed she knew one of the shooting victims, Christian LeCour, who worked as a security guard at the mall. She characterized LeCour as a “protector to everyone who worked in the mall,” as well as someone who was sincere and very friendly.
LeCour was one of eight persons slain in the second-deadliest mass shooting in the United States this year.
Police are still looking into what prompted a shooter to start fire at an Allen, Texas, outlet mall over the weekend.
According to police, the shooting on Saturday killed eight individuals and injured seven more.
The victims are as follows:
- Christian LaCour, a well-liked security guard at the outlets, his sister said.
- Aishwarya Thatikonda moved to the US from India five years ago and worked as an engineer, CNN affiliate WFAA reported.
- Elio Cumana-Rivas was from Dallas, Texas, the Texas Department of Public Safety said in a statement.
- Sisters Daniela Mendoza, a fourth-grader, and Sofia Mendoza, a second-grader, were killed and their mother is still in critical condition, the girls’ school district said in a letter.
- Three members of an Asian American family, Kyu Song Cho, 37, Cindy Cho, 35, and their child were also killed, the Texas Department of Public Safety and a GoFundMe post said.
Here’s what else we know so far:
The gunman, who was clad in tactical gear, was identified as 33-year-old Mauricio Garcia. According to a database kept by the Texas Department of Public Safety, he had worked for at least three security businesses and had taken hours of weapons competence training in recent years. He also served in the military for three months before being discharged owing to medical or mental health issues, according to an army official.
According to a top law enforcement source, authorities are examining whether the gunman was motivated by right-wing extremism. In the weeks leading up to the massacre, he appears to have written positively about Nazi philosophy while sharing photographs of his numerous weaponry and posting a snapshot of the Allen Premium Outlets mall on a social networking website.
A senior law enforcement source told ZiMetro News that the gunman was armed with an AR-15-style rifle and at least one additional weapon when he was killed down by police. Police also discovered many guns in his vehicle. According to a law enforcement source, the guns were legitimately acquired from private merchants.
Source | ZiMetro News