Police say 5 people were killed after a shooter opened fire inside a Macy's at a shopping mall in Burlington, Washington on Friday evening.
Authorities are searching for the suspected shooter, who they say left the scene at Cascade Mall before police arrived. He was last seen walking towards a nearby interstate highway. Skagit County's Department of Emergency Management cautioned people to stay indoors and "stay alert."
"People fled, customers hid in dressing rooms and employees locked the doors of nearby stores after gunshots rang out just after 7 p.m. Friday at the Cascade Mall," according to The Associated Press.
Police spokesman Sgt. Mark Francis told reporters that the man is armed with a "long gun, a rifle-type gun." He said the suspect is a Hispanic male in his 20s or 30s. "He was wearing all black ... and he had kind of a close haircut, his hair was kind of scruffy," Francis said. He released a photo of the suspected shooter on Twitter.
"We believe at this point one lone shooter," Francis said. "This investigation will be ongoing, and whether or not someone helped him out in some way is yet to be determined." The FBI said on Twitter that it is assisting with intelligence review and manpower and adds that it "has no information to suggest additional attacks planned in WA state."
Authorities had initially reported four female victims who died at the scene. A 5th victim, who is male, later died in the hospital, as Francis tweeted.
Burlington is about 65 miles north of Seattle.
This is the second violent incident at a U.S. mall in less than a week. Last Saturday evening, an assailant at a mall in St. Cloud, Minn. stabbed nine people before he was shot dead by an off-duty police officer.