UPDATE: Police identify gunman in Maryland mall shooting

By: Associated Press / ABC News Email
By: Associated Press / ABC News Email

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COLUMBIA, Md. -- Police have identified the shooter in the Maryland mall shooting as a 19-year-old teenager from College Park.

Howard County Police Chief Bill McMahon said Darion Marcus Aguilar arrived at the mall after 10 a.m. on Saturday and shot to death two people at a store on the upper level before killing himself.

McMahon said police are trying to determine whether Aguilar knew either of the victims.

Police identified the victims as 21-year-old Brianna Benlolo of College Park, Md., and 25-year-old Tyler Johnson of Ellicott City, Md. Both worked at a skateboard shop called Zumiez .

Police say they disabled crude attempts at explosive devices that were found in a bag carried by a gunman to a deadly shooting at a Maryland mall.

Police say the gunman shot two other people and then himself Saturday morning in Columbia, Md.

A news release late Saturday night says investigators searched the gunman's bag inside the store where two employees were shot. They found and disabled what they described as "crude devices that appeared to be an attempt at making explosives using fireworks."

The mall will remain closed Sunday and police will use dogs to search the mall overnight, which is standard procedure.

Police say they have tentatively identified the gunman but are declining to identify him while they follow up on leads.

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A shooting at a Maryland mall has left at least three dead, including the suspected shooter, the Howard County Police Department said.

Howard County PD Chief Bill McMahon said police were not yet releasing the identities of the three dead, and said they were still investigating a possible motive, but they were sure the incident was over.

"We are very confident that it was a single shooter, that there is no other shooter in the mall," McMahon said.

"All of the activity took place at one time, in one store," he said, though he would not identify which store.

One of the three dead was found near a gun and ammunition, and was believed to have likely been the shooter, police said. There were no reports of any shots fired since that body was discovered.

Aside from the three dead, only two people were injured, neither of them by bullets.

Police started getting 911 calls about a possible shooting at the mall at around 11:15 a.m., and it was immediately put on on lockdown, McMahon said.

Witnesses described hearing five or six pops, which sparked panic.

"I didn't know what I thought it was and then I saw the other people like starting to run and then there were these others, next to me, like that's definitely a gunshot, so I just took off running for the entrance," shopper Christine Cruz said.

Elizabeth Braun, 31, of Westminster, Md. told ABC News she was shopping when a group of people ran into her store in a panic.

Braun said she hid with at approximately 50 other people in a Victoria's Secret storage room to stay out of harm's way.

"Mostly [it] was pretty calm, mostly people were trying to figure what was going on," Braun said. "As soon as we were all in the back, people said it happened in the food court."

Braun said had walked through the food court around 11 a.m. and thought it seemed more empty than usual.

"I thought I must have gotten there here really early," she said.

"It's one of the two malls you would go to," if you live in the area, she said. "I guess everyone is in this naive state of mind that this would never happen to them."

The two-story mall is about 40 minutes outside Washington, D.C., and has a movie theater in addition to a number of shops.

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