Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Mall dismisses 'random' shooting

Eastland Mall, Charlotte, North Carolina, Center Court, Dillard's and the Ice Chalet. Photographed with camera phone 5/28/2005.

By: Brittany Morehouse, News 14 Carolina

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Many people continued to shop at Eastland Mall on Tuesday, one day after a shooting near the food court.

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said two groups of young men were involved in an argument when one man
took out a handgun and fired two shots at another.

“That was a behavior and an unfortunate incident that could have happened anywhere at any time,” CMPD spokesman Keith Bridges said. “It's an unfortunate incident for the mall. Someone just used very sorry judgment and ended up doing something like that.”

Marvin Snyder, the mall’s general manager, feels the same way. He doesn’t think the shooting proves that his mall is more dangerous than any other.

“We consider this a random incident,” he said. “It could have happened any other place at any time.”

Others aren’t so sure. Mall employee Chris Whiteheart said the mall might need to tighten security.

“I think it’s a shame that you can’t go to the mall and go shopping without having to worry about violence or shootings,” he said. “Maybe they should use metal detectors and stuff like that.”

Amico Edwards, a regular Eastland shopper, agrees.

"I think maybe they need to tighten up security and keep young people away from loitering and stuff like that,” he said.

Franklin Simon is concerned about his family.

“My sister works has to work in this mall, and I am concerned about her,” Simon said. “I think she has to work here today, and I don't want her working there at all.”

Mall management said it will review its security measures although criminal activity is down 21 percent from last year.

“We are going to re-evaluate our security policy to see if there is any changes that need to be made,” Snyder said.

Police have yet to charge anyone with the shooting. They detained three people for questioning Monday and charged two of them with unrelated offenses.

Terrence McBride, 19, is charged with disorderly conduct and resisting a public officer. Ronald Tolson, 19, is charged with trespassing.

The other detainee was released.


  1. I have never been to that mall, and I certainly had no idea there was another mall with an ice rink as CCM used to have. Interesting.

    As for shootings, they can happen anytime, anywhere. If we started letting the thought that this or that "could" happen if we venture out, we would start living a very unhealthy existance of just staying home behind our locked doors. We take precautions, of course...but we cannot let the fear of "what if" rule how we live our lives. When God is through with me here on earth, then and only then will I check out. He alone is in control.

  2. I think you have a very valid point. We cannot let the fear of "what if" rule how we live our lives.

    I think the main problem Eastland faces is perception. It's not on the most affluent side of town and some people I talk to from Charlotte think if indeed the mall goes down, that somehow all those teenagers will disappear. Not so, I tell them. just like at CCM, if you don't give poor kids an outlet for their energy (or at least a mall nearby to shop/hang at) they'll move on to the next closest mall as fast as the buses will take them, starting the cycle again.