PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Providence Place Mall has been evacuated and police are looking for suspects after a shooting on Monday night, city officials confirm.
The shooting took place around 4:45 p.m. on the second floor of the parking lot outside a door to Nordstrom and "it was not random," according to Providence Police Chief Hugh Clements and Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven Paré. Clements said the victim went to the mall after the shooting.
Paré said that a 19-year-old boy was shot and taken to the hospital in Rhode Island with injuries that are not life-threatening.
No arrests have been made, according to Paré, but the police stopped a person for questioning around 6 pm
said I stopped the police are looking for multiple suspects. One official said that the descriptions of at least two suspects had been shared with the police.
Clements said the authorities "cleared the mall in an abundance of precaution," but it appeared that the suspects had fled.
Mark Dunbar, general manager of Providence Place, directed questions to the police.
There was a strong police presence in the mall and outside on Francis Street while the officers responded to the incident. The police were seen checking the cars that leave the garage.
On social media, residents who said they were in the mall described great anxiety among shoppers as the shooting spread and the evacuation began. Marlene Gonzalez, a worker at the mall, said she and other employees were instructed to hide in a storage room, and spent about 20 minutes there before the evacuation.
Erin Moran said that she and a friend were in the food court on the way to get a haircut on the third floor of the mall when the alarm sounded. "We saw that some people started looking up, looking around, trying to find a way out, but there was no real announcement," he said. So we went back to cut our hair. "
But Moran said after she and others started receiving text messages about a shooting at the mall, they lowered the door of the store they were in and hid in a back room. "And finally a police officer arrived," he said. "They said: & # 39; Now we need everyone. & # 39; And they led everyone down the stairs and out the door. "
Alexa Cabral said that she and her companion were at J. Crew when the incident occurred.
A sales associate came up to us and said: # 39; There is an active shooter in the building, we have to evacuate immediately, "said Cabral. "So we left everything behind and even had to go back because I did not have shoes."
"So we just evacuated from J. Crew's back and then we were in the back hall of the mall, and we had to figure out how to get out," Cabral continued. "We tried several stairs." At one point someone said, "No, we needed to go to the other side, and we went back up the stairs." Finally we found the level of the street and evacuated.
The shooting had an immediate domino effect. Near the Veterans Memorial Auditorium was placed at the close, and it was not clear if an event scheduled for 7 p.m. it would take place. An employee said that the Renaissance Providence Downtown Hotel was also locked up.
The shooting occurs less than a week after another incident on Providence Place. Last Wednesday, the third floor of the shopping center was evacuated due to an electrical fire.
Eyewitness News is gathering details about this news in development. This story will be updated with the most recent and we will have more information about WPRI 12 during the night.
Providence Place Mall Shooting
Providence Place Mall Shooting