Suspect arrested in mall shooting that left 5 dead – USA TODAY
A gunman opened fire in a Macy’s in a mall north of Seattle.
Authorities arrested a man Saturday night in connection with the shooting at a mall in Burlington, Wash., that left five people dead.
Washington State Patrol identified the suspect asÂ Arcan Cetin, 20, ofÂ Oak Harbor, Wash.Â CetinÂ was taken into custody at around 7 p.m. PTÂ in Oak Harbor, about 29 miles southwest of Burlington.
Further details about the arrest were not immediately available. A news conference was planned for later Saturday.
Police had beenÂ searching for a gunman dressed in black who fled on foot toward an interstate highwayÂ after openingÂ fire Friday night in the makeup department at a Macy’sÂ store in Burlington, Wash., killing five people.
Initial surveillanceÂ footage fromÂ the Cascade Mall showedÂ the suspect entering theÂ buildingÂ late FridayÂ without a weapon but walking into Macy’s aboutÂ 10 minutes laterÂ carrying a “hunting-style”Â a rifle, police said.
The suspect, described asÂ in his teens or earlyÂ 20s, went intoÂ the store’s makeup areaÂ where he shotÂ four women and a man, Lt. Chris CammockÂ of the Mount Vernon Police DepartmentÂ said at a news conference.
He then leftÂ onÂ foot, out of range of cameras.
The four female victimsÂ died at the scene and the male victimÂ died laterÂ at a hospital.
Washington State Patrol spokesman Sgt. Mark FrancisÂ said authorities believe that there was only one shooterÂ but that his motive was not immediatelyÂ known. It was also unclearÂ whetherÂ the victims wereÂ specifically targeted.
Skagit County authorities in Burlington, about 65 miles northÂ of Seattle, usedÂ 11 search teams and two K-9 units toÂ clearÂ the 434,000-square-foot mall, going shop by shop, but warned the situationÂ remained volatile.
âWe are still actively looking for the shooter,â Francis said at a news conference. âStay indoors, stay secure.â
Authorities distributed blurry photos of the suspect online and appealed to the public for help in identifying him.
Stephanie Bose, assistant general manager at Johnny Carinoâs Italian restaurant near the Macyâs store, said she immediately locked the doors to the restaurant after hearing about the shooting from an employeeâs boyfriend.
âHe was trying to go to the mall and people were screaming,â she told the Associated Press. âIt was frantic.â
Police later searched the Cascade Mall and confirmed the four deaths,Â Francis said. The fifth victim died later at the Harborview Medical Center.
The FBIÂ is assisting local law enforcement in the investigation and saidÂ it has no informationÂ to suggest additional attacks are planned in the state.
Gov. Jay Inslee released a statement late Friday night expressing his condolences and prayers to those affected by the shootings.
âTragedy has struck in Washington tonight,â Inslee wrote on Twitter. “Trudi and I send our condolences to the families of the victims and prayers for anyone injured.Â Stay close to friends and loved ones as we await more information and, hopefully, news of the suspect’s capture.”
The Cascade MallÂ is an enclosed shopping mall that opened in 1990, according to the mallâs website. It features J.C. Penney, TJ Maxx, and Macyâs, among other stores, restaurants and a movie theater.
Joe ZavalaÂ of Blaine, Wash., was sitting outside Macy’s drinking a cup of coffee when he heard about eight or nine shots fired.
“Then I saw a man pointing a gun and shooting people,” ZavalaÂ said. “And then I got up to look a little closer and he saw me, pointed the gun, and I took off running.”
After the shots stopped, Zavala went back into the Macy’s to search for his wife. Zavala saw people lying on the floor, including two elderly women. Another woman was helping an injured person behind the cosmetics counter. A rifle was sitting on the counter.
“It all happened so fast,” saidÂ Zavala, who found his wife inside a fitting room. “At first I didnât believe it. I didnât believe what I was hearing. I felt helpless, because I couldnât do anything.”
Tari Caswell told the Skagit Valley HeraldÂ she was inside a Macy’s dressing room andÂ heard “what sounded like four balloons popping.”
âThen I heard seven or eight more, and I just stayed quiet in the dressing room because it just didnât feel right,”Â Caswell told theÂ Skagit Valley Herald. “And then I heard a lady yelling for help, and a man came and got me and another lady, and we ran out of the store.ââ
People inside the mall were transported by bus to His Place Church near the mall, Francis confirmed. Stores near the mall remain on lockdown, and roads around the mall are closed. Main highways are still open.
The shooting comes one week after a man stabbed 10 people at a mall in St. Cloud, Minn., before being fatally shot by anÂ off-duty police officer. Authorities later identified the attacker asÂ Dahir Adan,Â 20,Â a former part-time employee of Securitas Security Services who resigned in June.
âContributing: KING-TV, Seattle; the Associated Press