Nebraska mall shooting leaves man dead, woman injured

It was the second shooting at the Westroads Mall in Omaha since March. ! ! ! ! !

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Authorities searched Saturday for suspects in a shooting at a Nebraska mall that left one man dead and a woman injured.

Officers went through the Westroads Mall in Omaha in an unsuccessful attempt to locate the suspects after the shooting, which occurred outside a JCPenney.

They "fled the scene and are at large," the Omaha Police Department tweeted.

Police said a man struck by gunfire later died at a hospital.

A woman in her early 20s suffered non-life-threatening injuries, said police Lt. Neal Bonacci at a news conference. She had "walked" into an area hospital after the attack, the department said in a statement.

"It’s not an active shooter incident," Bonacci said. "It looked somewhat isolated."

Following the gunfire, some shoppers were locked inside stores as a safety precaution before police arrived, the spokesman said. The mall stated on its website that it was closed for the remainder of the day.

The University of Nebraska at Omaha Department of Public Safety said in a notice to the campus community that the shooting took place at noon. The school is about a mile from the shopping center.

One person has been taken to hospital with critical injuries after a shooting at Westroads Mall in Omaha, Neb., on Saturday April 17, 2021.

One person has been taken to hospital with critical injuries after a shooting at Westroads Mall in Omaha, Neb., on Saturday April 17, 2021.via Google

Students were urged people to stay away from the mall.

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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives tweeted that its agents would go to the shopping center to assist with the investigation.

An Omaha police officer was shot and injured at the same Westroads' JCPenney last month after responding to a shoplifting report.

"It’s a coincidence that two incidents have happened so closely together," Bonacci said Saturday. "Omaha is a very safe place."

Critics of the state's Republican governor, Pete Ricketts, noted on social media that he signed a symbolic proclamation earlier in the week that designates Nebraska a pro-gun "Second Amendment Sanctuary State."

The governor's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.