ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — Monday seemed like any other day at Valley View Mall in Roanoke. Saturday evening, though, it was a much different sight when gunshots were fired inside the mall.
“It’s senseless,” said Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea. “You know, these things are occurring, now, that are not normally in Roanoke.”
Lea was particularly frustrated because in recent weeks, Roanoke’s gun violence task force, as well as Operation Street Sweeper, has made strides in bringing down the number of violent crimes in the city.
The Roanoke Police Department says an argument between two groups of people led to the gunfire and to one person being taken to the hospital.
Lea told WFXR News his initial reaction to the shooting.
“I was very concerned, first and foremost, about the victims, somebody talking about a gun in the mall during a holiday weekend,” Lea said.
Police are not currently releasing the name of the victim or any person(s) of interest in the investigation, but Lea is confident police are on the right track.
“We’re going to get this perpetrator,” Lea said, “but we have to be willing to tell the police. Nobody seems to know a lot about Saturday’s shooting.”
Lea wants to assure shoppers that Valley View is a safe mall and that the city’s gun violence task force will continue to make Roanoke a safe city.
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