A lone man with a long gun killed three people before an armed bystander killed him in the Greenwood Park Mall food court Sunday evening, according to Greenwood Police Chief Jim Ison. Two people were injured.
"It appears that he had a rifle with several magazines of ammunition, entered the food court and began shooting," Ison said.
The "good Samaritan" who shot the man with the rifle was a 22-year-old man from Bartholomew County, Indiana, Ison said.
Greenwood Park Mall shootingWhat we know about the mall shooting in Greenwood, Indiana
"The real hero of the day is the citizen that was lawfully carrying a firearm in that food court and was able to stop the shooter almost as soon as he began," he said.
One of the wounded was a 12-year-old girl with a minor injury.
The other victims ranged in age from early 20s to 30.
The Johnson County Coroner's Office said early Monday four people were fatally shot, including one woman and three men. The assailant was among the dead. The woman was pronounced deceased at Eskenazi Hospital, one man died at St. Francis Hospital and two men were pronounced deceased at Greenwood Mall. Autopsies are pending.
The shooting happened around the mall's 6 p.m. closing time; the first emergency calls were received at 6:05 p.m.
A bomb squad was called because an unattended backpack - later "cleared" by authorities - was found in the bathroom near the food court. The FBI, ATF, Department of Homeland Security and Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department are assisting in the investigation.
“You are seeing the best that public safety has to offer right now behind us," Chris Bailey, IMPD assistant chief, said at the scene. "We are sickened by yet another type of incident like this in our country, in our city.”
Chris Roy, assistant manager of the mall's Van’s shoe store, was working Sunday when he saw people running through the hallway, away from the food court, just before closing.
“So, I jumped over the counter, locked the door, gathered my associates and other managers at the back door,” said Roy, 30.
They hadn’t heard gunshots, but Roy said they saw enough people running to not ask questions. Through the back door they huddled in an interior hallway with about 40 or 50 other people – mostly customers from other stores, Roy said. That hallway didn’t have an exterior exit, so they waited for police to come clear them, he said. Roy and another man tried to keep everyone calm, but occasional footsteps on the other side of one of the connecting doors sent panic through the group.
“We just instructed everybody to keep quiet,” he said.
After 10 or 15 minutes, police cleared them from the hallway and escorted them out of the mall.
Roy said he hadn’t called anyone while he was waiting in the hallway, but he did once he was out and safe.
“I called my mom.”
Greenwood Mayor Mark W. Myers issued a statement Sunday night: "This tragedy hits at the core of our community. Please offer your prayers to the victims and our first responders."
Greenwood is a city of about 60,000 just south of Indianapolis in Johnson County.
U.S. Sen. Todd Young, an Indiana Republican, tweeted this response to the shooting: "Terrible news tonight in my home county. Praying for the victims of a shooting at the Greenwood Park Mall."
The Greenwood Park Mall is one of nine Simon Property Group malls in Indiana. Located at the intersection of U.S. 31 North and County Line Road, it has more than 130 indoor and outdoor restaurants and shops. IndyStar has reached out to the company for comment.
Reporter Alexandria Burris contributed.
This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: Greenwood Indiana mall shooting in leaves 4 dead, including gunman