At least one suspect is in custody after a Saturday morning shooting at an El Paso Walmart near Cielo Vista Mall.
The shooting happened shortly before 11 a.m. at the El Paso Walmart off of Hawkins and Gateway East boulevards. Witness Vanessa Saenz, who spotted the alleged shooter, told FOX News that the man was holding a dark rifle while pointing and shooting at people.
Saenz, who had her 1-year-old son with her, said the suspect was wearing a black shirt, cargo pants, and had ear muffs on his ears. Saenz said she saw a woman in the Walmart parking lot fall down after the suspect apparently shot her. She said she also heard a string of popping sounds and spotted a man who looked like he was dancing.
“He was just pointing at people and just shooting straight at them,” Saenz said. “I saw three to four [people] fall to the ground.”
Saenz also added that she saw the suspect casually stroll into the Walmart, “nonchalant as if he was on a mission.”
— KTSM 9 News (@KTSMtv) August 3, 2019
Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick told the outlet that the suspect is a 21-year-old. Local reports indicated the suspect is Patrick Crusius, of Dallas.
A law enforcement official in El Paso told me the Walmart shooter is in custody. Patrick Crusius of Dallas. Just turned 21 years old this week. pic.twitter.com/CEJh6rYij1
— Anna Giaritelli (@Anna_Giaritelli) August 3, 2019
Previous reports indicated Mayor El Paso Mayor Dee Margo announced that three suspects are believed to be involved in the incident. However, a police spokesman later announced that only person, a male, was in custody.
NBC News reports that 18 victims were at the store when they were shot. Several people were taken to the hospital with serious injuries, while others have been pronounced dead.
According to University Medical Center of El Paso spokesman Ryan Mielke, 10 victims were taken to University Medical Center with “level one” injuries, meaning serious, life-threatening injuries.
⚠️Video from inside JCPENNY in Cielo Vista Mall as it was being evacuated, due to an active shooter in the area.
Video: Victoria Balderrama pic.twitter.com/7v67DL4mPG
— Celina Renae Quintana (@KTSMCelina) August 3, 2019
Everyone should avoid the area at this time as the scene is still active, El Paso police tweeted.
The FBI, along with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are at the scene assisting the El Paso Police Department.
Anyone searching for family members should go to a reunification center set up at MacArthur Intermediate School located 8101 Whitus Drive.
This is a developing story. Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.
[Feature Photo: Twitter Screenshot]