Woodland Hills Mall releases statement after teen shoots at security vehicle
TULSA, Okla. (KTUL) —
The Woodland Hills Mall released a statement on Tuesday regarding a teenager shooting at a security vehicle in the parking lot the day before.
Brendan Griffith sent the following on behalf of the mall:
Nothing is more important to us than the safety of our shoppers and employees. We are grateful for the swift response by our security team and the Tulsa Police Department, and for the fact that no one was injured during this incident in our parking lot. As this is now a police matter, all further inquiries should be directed to the Tulsa Police Department.
Police are still searching for the suspect, described as a young black man between 16 and 18 years old, wearing a light-colored hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans.
They are hoping to review security camera footage to get a better description of the three teenagers involved.
Officer Jeannie Pierce said the teens were escorted out of the mall after an argument. A security guard was driving around to make sure they were leaving the property. One teenager pulled out a gun and fired several shots at the security guard’s vehicle, hitting it three times. The guard was not hurt.
“It’s really unbelievable that something as small and as silly as being asked to leave a property that you would get out a gun and you would fire rounds at a human being," she said.
Frequent shopper, Mary Klinger doesn’t feel unsafe about going back to the mall but the fact that it was a teenager with a gun scares her.
"The parents need to have better control about knowing where their teenagers are," said Klinger.
Elliot Wulff who works right down the street from the mall agrees.
"My first thought was it had to have been a BB gun, right and my colleague was like no, it was a gun," sad Wulff. "I would have never considered doing something like that in my youth. I don’t know what could possibly motivate someone to do that, personally but I don’t know. I hope it doesn’t become the new norm.”
He hopes the reckless behavior shown by this teen sends a message to parents.
“If you have guns, lock them up," he said. "Keep them away from your kids. I like the idea of more gun control but I think at the end of the day it just comes down to individual responsibility and really taking ownership over these things.”
The long term impact of parents not doing anything is something police said should worry people.
“If he can be so reckless just to fire rounds off at a mall because he got asked to leave the property who knows what other kind of violent acts this individual would do," said Pierce.
Police said one of the teens had previously been banned from the mall.
Pierce said if these teens are caught the only one who could potentially face charges is the teen who fired the gun.