When the sound of gunshots reverberated inside San Bernardino’s Waterman Discount Mall on Thursday afternoon, the crowd of families and shoppers initially froze, unsure where to run.
“You didn’t know what direction it was coming from,” said Jasmine Webb, 32, of San Bernardino. “And then the gentleman who actually got shot came walking through the door and was just drenched in blood.”
About 2:30 p.m., a former employee of a barbershop got into an argument with the shop’s owner, and the owner shot the former employee, said Sadie Albers, a San Bernardino Police Department spokeswoman. The man was taken to a hospital for his injuries, but was not in critical condition, and the shooter was in custody, she said.
No further information was available.
The mall, which has security guards, has been the scene of multiple shootings.
In December, two men — Bernie Robins Jr., 23, of Inglewood, and Tyssun Campbell, 19, of L.A. — were shot in their vehicle shortly after leaving the mall, the San Bernardino Sun reported. Robins died shortly after the shooting. On Christmas Day in 2016, two men shot each other in the mall’s parking lot, the newspaper reported.
Webb, who had planned to visit a piercing and tattoo shop, said she already didn’t like going to that mall because, in high school, her friend DeMarcus Brooks, 16, and his father Odrum Brooks, 34, were shot and killed at the mall, innocent victims caught in a neighborhood feud, prosecutors said at the time of the shooting in 2003.
A video shot by Webb shows the man who was shot covered in blood on his left side as bystanders attempt to stop the bleeding with towels. The man had one bullet lodged in his face, she said.
At the time of Thursday’s shooting, the mall was full of shoppers, with several children near the barbershop when the shooting occurred, Webb said. The shooting occurred around the time school starts getting out. An elementary and high school are next to the mall, she said.
“Guns are nothing to play with, and bullets don’t have names on them, so although they were aiming toward someone else, anybody else could have been injured during that altercation, and that’s really scary,” said Webb, who is almost four months pregnant.