Mall Shooting: South Carolina Police Officer Killed Pursuing Suspect At Mall
Mall Shooting: South Carolina Police Officer Killed Pursuing Suspect At Mall

Mall Shooting: South Carolina Police Officer Killed Pursuing Suspect At Mall (Video)

One police officer is dead following a shooting Wednesday morning at the Richland Mall in Columbia.

Officer Greg Alia, 32, died while responding with one other officer at Richland Mall in Forest Acres between 8 and 9 a.m., WIS-TV reported. The suspect, identified as Jarvis Hall, is now in police custody.

Police said Hall was carrying a gun and a knife.

“They were very frantic, and they were trying to hurry, you know, getting here. And nothing was stopping them either, you know. They were coming wide open. It was really scary to see something like that. It was really scary,” Jeannette Roach, who saw the officers arrive at the mall, said.

Alia was a seven-year veteran of the force and had just had a baby boy with his wife, according to WLS-TV. The Associated Press reported one person was taken to the hospital, but it was not immediately clear whether it was the officer or someone else.

The State Law Enforcement Division and Columbia police were called to help. SLED spokesman Thom Berry said agents and crime scene technicians were requested, and a number were at the scene.

A Columbia police spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to a message

Forest Acres is a residential town virtually surrounded by Columbia. The mall is anchored by a department store, a bookstore and a theater complex.

About two hours after the report of the shooting, most of the mall was closed. Traffic was flowing smoothly, the parking garage was open, and the main entrance was closed by yellow crime scene tape.

About half a dozen police cars were at the scene. News reporters were being kept away from the immediate area.

The department store was expected to open slightly later than usual. A restaurant at a far end of the mall with a separate entrance was open.

Customers pulled in and out of a gas station on the corner.

Nearby A.C. Flora High School was locked down briefly after the report of the shooting. The lockdown was lifted at 9 a.m.


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