Suspect remains at large in Crossgates shooting
Police continued their search for a suspect in a shooting that forced shoppers to flee Crossgates Mall on Saturday.
GUILDERLAND >> Police continued their search for a suspect in a shooting that forced hundreds of shoppers to either flee Crossgates Mall on Saturday afternoon or remain locked down inside for as many as eight hours.
“We have not made an arrest yet, but we have several solid leads we are following up on,” Guilderland Police Chief Carol Lawlor said Sunday.
No one was reported injured as a result of the shooting, which took place about 2:20 p.m. Saturday in front of the mall’s Apple store. Lawlor said she wants patrons of the mall to understand it was an isolated incident, however, and that they should not be overly concerned for their safety.
The mall reopened at 11 a.m. Sunday, after police from throughout the area had swept the entire facility in search of the suspected shooter.
“There was an argument between two individuals, and it developed into a shot being fired,” she said. “It wasn’t somebody who wanted to shoot up the mall.”
Guilderland Police Department, the lead investigative agency for the incident, is looking for a 6-foot, 200-pound black man who was wearing a white shirt and black, hooded sweatshirt at the time. Lawlor said that was the only description police had received of the shooter so far after viewing surveillance video and interview potential witnesses.
“That doesn’t lock us into that description, but that’s all we have at this point,” she said.
Town Supervisor Peter Barber asked any mall-goers who may have any images of the incident to share them with police. Police confirmed two people were initially detained Saturday, but they were not involved in the incident and were subsequently released.
Police said they were aware of a Twitter post that surfaced on social media showing an image of a man pointing a gun and the text “who’s tryna get shot at crossgates mall?” and was timestamped just before noon Saturday, but Lawlor said Sunday the person in that picture is not who they are seeking.
Lawlor would not comment Sunday on whether the incident could be gangrelated.
Federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies responded to the incident, which officials said was the first-ever shooting at Crossgates Mall. A call came into town police reporting shots fired, and officers were there in one minute, followed by several other agencies from throughout the area.
Mall management and store employees acted immediately by putting the mall into lockdown until the mall was deemed safe, at which patrons were led through an evacuation that continued until about 10 p.m. Saturday.
Police cars are positioned outside the Crossgates Mall in Guilderland, while responding to reports of gunfire inside on Saturday.