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Washington Square Mall seeking to rebound from vandalism and pandemic

Posted at 1:57 PM, Jun 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-05 14:26:14-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Washington Square Mall says the vandalism only hurts jobs and the neighborhood already with limited shopping choices.

Surveillance video inside Washington Square Mall from Saturday night shows looters storming the mall.

Multiple cameras caught people breaking into stores, stealing from kiosks, and fleeing as their every move is now evidence in a possible criminal investigation.

MORE | IMPD: Two arrested after breaking into Target at Washington Square Mall

"I support the protest. I support what they are fighting for," Keith Lee, owner and property manager of Washington Square Mall said. "I don't support what they are vandalizing for — your vandalizing to get some free stuff. don't support that."

Lee is committed to keeping the mall open.

In January, anchor stores Burlington and Dick's Sporting Goods decided to close and move out. Despite that and the pandemic, Lee says about 70 tenants and stores have remained. Many are minority-owned and now feeling the setback of being vandalized.

"If you are fighting for black rights, why would you bust a black person's window? That's not fighting for the rights of a black person — now you affected a black business," Lee said. "This is a black business. This mall is owned by a black person, a person of color, but you came and vandalized it. Think about (it), that's not fighting for the same right."

At the mall, "Furniture Corner" intends to stay.

The parking lot has recently been resurfaced, and business is going well.

"All the things going on in the area we support those," the owner of Furniture Store said. "We have a business to run, and we are interested in helping the economy."

Lee says he's upgraded lighting, installing LED lights, and is planning other improvements. His other priority is focused on keeping Target, which was targeted on Sunday.

As you can see, looters caught on the camera broke in but were apparently scared off by the alarms as they fled the scene, leaving digital evidence in the hands of police.

"I'm working with Target as much as I can too. I have to keep them. I'm going to do what I do for any tenant. I want you to stay," Lee said.

You can watch the full interview with Washington Square Mall owner and property manager Keith Lee below.

Raw Interview: Washington Square Mall owner and property manager Keith Lee
Raw Interview: Washington Square Mall owner and property manager Keith Lee (2)