A 15-year-old girl was injured in a shooting at the South Shore Plaza shopping center in Braintree on Friday night, authorities said. She is expected to survive and is being treated at an area hospital.
Two suspects who initially left the scene are now in custody, according to police and the city of Braintree.
Both the people and Massachusetts State Police spokesman Dave Procopio said the evidence suggests the shooting was not terrorism or an active shooter event. Police dogs and tactical teams were called in to help clean up the mall. Special agents from the Boston-based Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives office were also dispatched to the scene.
At around 5pm, the Braintree police ordered the stores closed and advised customers to remain inside while authorities responded. The closure was lifted later on Friday night.
The substitute store manager, Destinee Kimball, 23, answered the phone at Francesca’s inside the mall around 5:15 pm during closing.
She explained to WBUR that she heard discussions outside her store, which is next to Forever21 and Nordstrom from the mall.
“The discussion continued to grow, getting stronger. And then all of a sudden we heard some gunshots, seeing people running, ”said Kimball. “So I opened our door where we hide people if an emergency like this occurs. And I asked everyone in the store to come in. And we shut ourselves up where we can’t be reached. “
This is not the first South Shore Plaza shooting that Kimball has experienced. In 2017, customers fled after they were shot at the mall’s Macy’s store, according to a Boston Globe report at the time. Nobody was hurt.
“It is very scary. I think everyone is still a little shocked, ”said Kimball. “And once we get out of here and get into our normal lives and go back to our homes, I think the feelings will come to the surface.”
With reports from Hannah Chanatry of WBUR.