Chester man busted for shootout at Springfield Mall
SPRINGFIELD >> A Chester man has been charged in connection with his involvement in an argument that began in the Springfield Mall and ended with gunfire in the mall’s parking lot last month.
Waheed N. Jenkins, 31, was preliminarily arraigned Friday morning on charges of possession of a firearm prohibited, firearms not to be carried without a license, receiving stolen property, possession of an instrument of crime, possession of a weapon and four counts of recklessly endangering another person, according to online court records.
Township Police Chief Joseph Daly said Friday night that Jenkins, who was identified as one of the suspected gunmen the day of the incident on Oct. 20, surrendered on the charges earlier in the day. He was accompanied by his attorney, Mark Much, the chief said.
“We have half. Now we are looking for the second gunman,” Daly said Friday night, noting that investigators have no suspects as the investigation continues.
It was about 1 p.m. on Oct. 20 when police responded to mall on Baltimore Pike after receiving reports of an active shooter. Arriving officers found vehicles with bullets holes and shattered windows, and shell casings scattered about the area.
Those involved in the altercation were gone by the time police arrived.
At the time, police said the incident apparently started with an argument between two small groups of people inside the mall – one on the upper level, one on the lower level. The argument became physical near the Macy’s end of the mall, spilling out into the parking lot near the Ulta store where the gunfire erupted.
No injuries occurred but four vehicles were pierced by bullets or had glass broken.
“There were two rival gangs from housing projects in Chester who happened to be at the mall at the same time. There was jawing back and forth,” Daly said Friday, elaborating on the suspected motive.
While Daly lauded the efforts of lead township police detectives Daniel McNeely and Robert Nutley, he called the investigation a collaborative effort with the Delaware County Criminal Investigation Division and Chester police.
In addition, Daly said, “We had a number of witnesses come forward.”
According to Daly, detectives executed several search warrants as part of the exhaustive investigation, including a vehicle registered to a relative of Jenkins.
“It had a hidden compartment. We X-rayed it and found it,” Daly said, referring to a firearm.
Jenkins was remanded to the county prison in lieu of posting bail, which was set at 10 percent of $500,000. A preliminary hearing is listed for Nov. 29 before Magisterial District Judge Andrea B. Puppio.
An attempt to reach Much for comment after business hours Friday was unsuccessful.
Police rushed to shooting scene at the Springfield Mall on Oct. 20.