Man killed in shooting inside Ocala, Florida, mall

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Man killed in shooting inside Ocala, Florida, mall

Police were searching Sunday for a man wanted in connection with a shooting that killed a man and wounded a woman at a mall in Ocala, Florida.

Albert J. Shell Jr., 39, is wanted on charges of premeditated first-degree murder and attempted premeditated first-degree murder, police said.

Police said they believe the gunman targeted David Nathaniel Barron, 40, who was found dead Saturday afternoon in a common area at the Paddock Mall in Ocala, about 77 miles north of Orlando.

The woman was being treated at a hospital for a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to her leg, police said at a news conference. She is expected to make a full recovery, they said.

The gunman is believed to have run away “undetected” and was still at large, police said. He was wearing a black hoodie and black pants, as well as a black mask partly covering his face, said police, who said they recovered a gun they believe he used. They did not give details about it.

Police said Sunday they had obtained a search warrant for Shell. They are offering a $5,000 reward to anyone who provides information that leads to his arrest.

Police said there were some “ancillary” injuries, including one person who was being treated for a broken arm and others who were being treated for chest pain.

Image: The Paddock Mall
The Paddock Mall was evacuated after a shooting report Saturday.Alan Youngblood / For the Star-Banner/USA Today Network via Reuters

“It’s the worst. The worst thing we can imagine right now at this time of the year. … Somebody has suffered a loss in their family,” Police Chief Michael Balken said at a news conference. “It’s a horrible time of year for this to happen ever, but it is especially sad during the holidays.”

Police got a call about an active shooter situation with multiple shots fired at the mall at 3:40 p.m. Saturday, prompting them to respond with a “heavy police presence” to “eliminate the threat,” the police department said.

When officers arrived, they determined that there was no active shooter but that there had been a shooting, police said.

Syriah Williams said she was shopping with her mother at a Bath & Body Works store when the shooting unfolded. She said she heard a shot, a pause and then three more shots before “chaos erupted.”

“The employees opened the back storage area and told everyone to run. The hallway led to a back exit,” Williams said.

Police are investigating with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office. They asked anyone who was at the mall and may have witnessed the shooting to contact them with information.

Rebecca Cohen

Rebecca Cohen is a breaking news reporter for NBC News.

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