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Photo Shows Man In Handcuffs; Witness Reports 35-40 Shots

An elderly man was found near an escalator in the store, and police said a young black man was being sought as the suspected shooter.
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A viewer photo shows a man in handcuffs after shots were fired inside the Von Maur store at Westroads Mall on Wednesday afternoon.

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Earlier, police said a young black man was being sought as the suspected shooter. A description of the shooter, broadcast over scanners, was that he was in an Army-green vest and was holding a rifle. The viewer's photo showed a young black man in fatigues surrounded by police and apparently in handcuffs. Police have not yet confirmed an arrest. It was reported by KETV crews that the man in fatigues was found under a bus bench.

KETV NewsWatch 7's Carol Kloss said she could see a man in cuffs and a black, hooded sweatshirt surrounded by police.

Witness reports vary widely. Jennifer Kramer, a witness, said she heard 35 to 40 shots as she was taking cover inside the mall. A Westroads kiosk worker, Kathy, told KETV NewsWatch 7 that she heard three pops. She said a Bath and Body Works manager approached her and told her to get out of the mall hallway as there was a situation, and a shooter had not been located.

Another witness said he heard four or five shots in rapid succession. Shawn Vidlak said he was told while he was inside the mall that as many as five people had been injured.

An elderly man was found near an escalator in the store. Early indications were that as many as five people may be injured. At 2:30 p.m., four stretchers were seen with victims on them being taken out of the store. Two more stretchers were in place at the doors.

Colby Barak told KETV NewsWatch 7 that she was on lockdown inside Westroads Mall. She said she was doing Christmas shopping at Younkers, and an announcement was made that no one would be allowed to leave.

Just before 2 p.m., Barrett said, another announcement was made that shoppers could leave but would not be allowed back in. Barrett said she believes she saw a deceased man inside the mall.

A group of paramedics made their way into Von Maur at about 2:25 p.m.

Doug, a shopper at the mall, said police are restricting the movements of people inside the mall.

Outside the mall, shoppers were seen leaving with their hands over their heads.

Inside a first-floor dressing room at Von Maur, Julie used her cell phone to call KETV NewsWatch 7 and report that she was with a group of girls and they were scared. Julie said she heard noise getting closer, but she didn't know what had happened. She said she went out of the dressing room and saw other people in the store running and laying down, so she went back into the dressing room.

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