OKLAHOMA CITY (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — A 24-year-old man suspected of shooting another man while inside an Oklahoma City shopping mall has surrendered to police and is in custody.
Police believe Elizha Sanders got into an argument with a 22-year-old man inside a Foot Locker store at Penn Square Mall and then opened fire, sending frightened shoppers running and looking for places to hide.
Sanders is accused of shooting Gerron Cobb before running from the mall.
The Oklahoma City Police Gang Unit, Criminal Intelligence Unit and U.S. Marshals were able to contact Sanders, who was arrested around 1:30 a.m. Friday in the nearby city of Moore, Withrow said.
Online jail records show Sanders was booked on a complaint of assault and battery with a deadly weapon, but do not list an attorney who could speak on his behalf. Those records do not show that formal charges have been filed.
The shooting forced the mall to close as police spent hours searching stores and clearing out shoppers who had taken cover. Withrow said video footage from the mall shows the suspect leaving just after the fight.
Cobb was shot in the chest and was in critical but stable condition late Friday morning.
Police said the suspect, wearing sweatpants but no shirt, was seen fleeing the mall. Withrow said the shooting happened after what witnesses described as an argument and physical altercation between the two men.
“When the shooting started, there were bunch of people hid in closets, hid in back rooms, locked the stores,” Sgt. Kris Gellenbeck said earlier. “So they’re having to go store to store to clear the civilians out and look for the suspect.”
The shooting came amid the busy holiday shopping season. Those standing in the mall’s parking lot after the shooting included a person dressed as Santa Claus.
Amari Lafevers, who works at J.C. Penney in the mall, told The Oklahoman that she was completing a sale at a cash register when people started running and saying, “Shots fired! Shots fired!”
“You know it’s kind of surreal because you don’t really know what to do in that moment,” she said. “It’s just you don’t really think it will happen to us until it does.”
Among those evacuated from the mall were members of the Oklahoma City Thunder, who had been at a private movie screening. A team spokesman says the team was never in any danger.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)