Mayfair Mall teen shooting suspect charged with multiple counts of reckless injury

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MILWAUKEE COUNTY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The 15-year-old who police say shot eight people at Mayfair Mall made his initial court appearance on Tuesday, Nov. 24. 

The teen, who is a juvenile, was charged with eight counts of first-degree reckless injury while armed with dangerous weapon, and one count of possession of a dangerous weapon for someone under the age of 18. His hearing was held in Children's Court. CBS 58 is not naming the suspect because he has not been charged as an adult. 

According to court documents, the first officers arrived to Mayfair Mall less than a minute after the initial call for a report of an active shooter. 

When they arrived, they found several people who had been shot near the Macy's entrance. 

The documents say one witness said she was at the mall shopping with friends. Shortly after getting to the mall, she saw a group of four people walking through the mall and shopping. She said while the group was coming down from the upper level on an escalator, she heard a male "screaming" as he approached the group. That male was with the 15-year-old shooting suspect. 

The witness told a detective she recalled seeing the suspect and the male he was with at the mall earlier. "She explained that these two subjects did not appear to be shopping, they were walking through the mall with purpose and appeared to be 'looking for someone,'" the document said. 

The witness noticed that while the male was advancing toward the group coming down the escalator, the 15-year-old stayed back and reached for his waistband. As his shirt came up, she could see the handle of a handgun. Court documents say she told the detective the male with the shooting suspect punched a member of the group, and the 15-year-old drew his gun. She said the rest of the group began to move toward the male with the shooting suspect. At that point, she said the suspect started moving toward the group, pointed his gun, and started shooting. 

The documents state the witness said the man who had initially been punched fell to the ground, which made the witness believe he was shot. Within seconds, she said another person and the male who had been with the shooting suspect fell in a similar way. 

She said the suspect appeared to be targeting the group. She said one of the members of the group that was being shot at, got up and tried to run away. The suspect then turned his attention toward that person and kept shooting as they were trying to run away, according to the court document. 

The witness estimated she heard a total of 20 shots. 

The court document says the witness statement was corroborated by several other witnesses and video footage. 

Three of the people shot were part of the group that had been coming down the escalator, according to the document. One of those that had been shot was the male who had initially been with the shooting suspect. The other victims were bystanders. 

The court document says the 15-year-old was seen on security footage leaving the mall as police arrived. He crossed the street to the Best Buy parking lot and was then picked up by a SUV. Police were able to determine the vehicle was an Uber vehicle and the driver was called by a number associated with the suspect's father. Uber records reveal the vehicle then dropped the 15-year-old off in front of his house. 

Evidence technicians collected shell casings and bullet fragments from the scene. The fragments matched the gun found when the 15-year-old was arrested. At the time of his arrest, he was in a car with a packed bag and the Glock 9mm handgun used in the shooting, according to court documents. 

At his hearing Tuesday, the 15-year-old's attorneys argued he should be released from secure detention and placed on GPS monitoring. 

"We’ve been given a small sliver of evidence in this case. Smallest fraction of the evidence that will eventually come to light about what happened, when where why and with who and we have almost none of it," said the 15-year-old's attorney.

Commissioner J.C. Moore denied that request. 

"Even with the sliver of evidence that is included in the petition, this court is still finding this is an incredibly dangerous series of events. This was a shooting in a mall that was crowded with people, the week before the start of the holiday shopping season. It involves eight different victims, who were shot, because of an altercation that the juvenile is alleged, based on the petition, to have been involved in. I can’t imagine a more dangerous set of circumstances for this court to consider for purposes of placement," he said. 

The 15-year-old suspect will be back in court next week. Two other people have been arrested as part of the investigation, according to Wauwatosa Police. Their names have not been released yet and they have not been charged. 

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