One person was taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries after a shooting inside Chesterfield Towne Center on Tuesday evening.
Police received a call at 6:09 p.m. that there was a fight in the food court area of the mall, according to Chesterfield Police Maj. R.M. Louth.
During the fight, gunfire erupted, and one person — a male — suffered life-threatening injuries, Louth said at a news conference Tuesday evening outside the mall.
There were no other known victims, Louth added.
“At this very moment we have cleared Chesterfield Towne Center, [and] there’s no active threat going on right this second,” Louth said at 7:37 p.m. “The mall is safe. There are no other victims we’ve been able to identity.”
Louth said as of Tuesday evening, investigators had not developed any suspects and don’t have a description of the shooter.
“Right now it’s still an ongoing investigation and we’re trying to develop some suspect information based on interviews that we had here and video at the mall,” Louth said.
In responding to a question, Louth said, “It’s too early for us to determine” whether there was more than one suspect involved.
Witnesses reported hearing multiple gun shots.
Khadejia Cole said she and other employees at Bath & Body Works were cleaning the store and counting the register receipts when shots rang out.
“We heard six shots and we just saw people running, so we just ran straight to the back,” Cole said.
Following the shooting, dozens of police cars and several fire trucks could be seen in the parking lot outside the mall’s food court, as well as around the perimeter of the mall.
Louth said police, fire and emergency paramedics acted in concert when the shooting call came in. Virginia State Police also responded in force.
“We’ve had many active shooter exercises here at Chesterfield Towne Center over the years,” he said. “Officers that were responding to the scene had a pretty good idea of what to do when they actually arrived. We paired up in staging with the fire department and EMS. We definitely have a plan for how we approach a situation like this.”
“We married up with the fire department to establish rescue teams, if there were multiple injuries inside,” he added.
Louth said he didn’t expect the mall to reopen until Wednesday morning. “We got some of our forensic people on the inside that need to process that scene,” he said.