Suicidal Gunman Kills 8 In X-Mas Mall Massacre

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(CNN) — A gunman killed eight people and wounded five others Wednesday at the popular Westroads Mall in Omaha, Nebraska, before apparently turning the gun on himself, police said. “We do not believe that we haveskullfade.gif any other shooter,” said Sgt. Teresa Negron. Seven people died at the scene, and two — a man and a woman — died after reaching Creighton University Medical Center. Three of the wounded are in critical condition. The shootings began just before 2 p.m. at the Von Maur store inside the shopping complex.The gunman [NOT pictured, above] had a rifle, Negron said. After the shootings began, shoppers and employees streamed out of the building with their hands up. Some described hiding in clothes racks, dressing rooms and bathrooms after hearing the shots. Shoppers described scenes of horror as they fled the mall. “We heard about 35, 40 shots, and on our way our we did see someone down by the escalator, bleeding,” Jennifer Cramer told KETV. MORE

UPDATE: Gunman Troubled Teen, Recently Fired From McDonalds

OMAHA, Neb. — The shooter at Westroads Mall was identified as Robert A. Hawkins of Bellevue, according to the Sarpy County Sheriff’s Department. Hawkins, 19, had been arrested on a couple of misdemeanors on skullfade.gifNovember 24th and was due in court this month. One charge included minor in possession of alcohol. Sarpy County deputies said they are getting a warrant to search Hawkins’ home in the Quail Creek neighborhood in Bellevue. The woman who owns that house at 4302 McCartey Drive, who only gave her first name of Debra, said Hawkins had a lot of emotional instability. She said she thought he was turning things around. She said he had just learned that he was fired from McDonald’s. “He said he’d gotten fired and was pretty upset and said, ‘This is the only way,’ and we tried to talk to him,” Debra said. “He was just a very troubled — I had no idea that he was this troubled. I don’t know if it was because he got fired from McDonald’s.” [via KETV-7 OMAHA]

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