Two teenagers have been arrested after one person died after a shooting that took place Sunday at Easton Town Center in Columbus, Ohio. The mall was locked down shortly after the incident.
Two 13-year-olds have been arrested in connection with the fatal shooting. One has been charged with murder, and the other has been charged with obstructing justice in Franklin County Juvenile Court, according to the Columbus Dispatch.
The shooting was initially reported at 6:14 p.m. from a Lululemon store nearby. Shortly after, the victim was discovered near Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams on Grammercy Street by an officer who was on duty at the center. The officer attempted to provide aid to the victim, but the boy was soon pronounced dead at Mount Carmel East hospital.
The victim's age has not been released, but he is believed to be under the age of 18.
Dispatchers initially claimed there were two victims and that one was taken to Mount Carmel East and the other was taken to Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. However, it was later determined that the only victim was initially going to OSU, but the ambulance diverted and took him to Mount Carmel East instead.
The shooting was first thought to have occurred inside the main mall area, around the AMC Theater. But it was confirmed that the incident took place outside the main area. More than 70 law enforcement officers responded to the incident.
The two teen suspects are likely to have their first court appearances on Monday. The Columbus Dispatch reported that under Ohio law, teenagers can be tried as adults in cases of murder. However, because the teens are under the age of 14, their case will remain in juvenile court.
Mayor Andrew J. Ginther assured the community on Sunday that those responsible would be held accountable for their actions.
"We're going to identify and capture all who were involved," he said. "We will not allow these shootings to diminish our sense of safety."
Chief Elaine Bryant and Ginther also urged state legislators to take action on gun regulations.
Assistant Chief Greg Bodker said that a "number" of juveniles were detained in connection with the shooting, but he was unaware of any arrests, per WCMH-TV.
"These are people who should not have guns in the first place," Bodker said.
“There were a lot of children at Easton today, and there were a lot of adults at Easton today."
Ginther drew comparisons between this event and a shooting that occurred in 2021 at Polaris Fashion Place.
"These are both places I go to regularly," Ginther said. "But what has happened is disturbing and unacceptable. It's the type of shootings and violence we're seeing in neighborhoods throughout the city that increasingly are involving more and more juveniles."
Columbus police offer update on fatal Easton Town Center shootingwww.youtube.com
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