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Updated December 24th, 2023 at 15:04 IST

Florida shooting: Man opens fire in mall, one dead, several injured

Police responded to the scene around 3:40 p.m. after calls of multiple shots being fired at the mall. A woman was also shot in the leg, according to sources.

Piyush Gupta
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Florida, US: A man died in a shooting at a shopping mall in central Florida on Saturday afternoon, the Ocala Police chief Mike Balken informed. A woman was also shot in the leg, according to sources.

Balken stated that police received 911 calls reporting many rounds fired inside the Paddock Mall, with the caller reporting an "active shooter scenario," and that a large police force was deployed to the location to deal with the situation.

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The suspect fled the scene and left behind the firearm, Balken said. Police responded to the scene around 3:40 p.m. after calls of multiple shots being fired at the mall.

“Officers immediately made entry into the mall (and) ultimately discovered that this was not what we would consider an active shooter,” Balken told reporters. 

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Several other mall visitors were reportedly injured during the incident, with one reporting chest pain and another reporting a fractured arm, according to authorities.

According to the police chief, the mall will be closed for the next 12 hours while the investigation proceeds.

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He also urged witnesses to come forward while authorities seek the suspect.

A woman who owns a store in the mall later stated that she had alerted the police about the mall shooter.

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J.C. Penney and Foot Locker are among the many retailers in the mall.

Calvin and Diana Amos, who were shopping at J.C. Penney, told the Ocala Star-Banner that they rapidly evacuated the store once they observed what was going on. They described themselves as terrified and frightened.

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This is a developing story, further details awaited. 

(With agency inputs)

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Published December 24th, 2023 at 09:16 IST

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