INDIANAPOLIS — A 16-year-old was killed and a man was injured after a shooting at Castleton Square Mall Tuesday night.
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers responded to the mall parking lot just before 8 p.m. Both victims were taken to the hospital, where Michael Mason Jr. was pronounced dead.
"Pulling up, people were running from the mall almost in frantic," said Devin Craig.
Craig was leaving a nearby restaurant when first responders started arriving. He witnessed medics desperately trying to save this young man's life.
"My heart began to drop and I began to pray in the spirit that Lord, please save this individual not knowing this is a young person but this is a human life sitting there helpless," said Craig.
The other victim, a man, is in stable condition, according to IMPD Night Watch Captain Mike Leepper. The relationship between Mason and the man is unknown.
WRTV watched as detectives canvassed the parking lot from Kay Jewelers to the AMC Theatre looking for evidence.
Leepper says a third person, an adult, is cooperating with law enforcement and is currently a person of interest.
IMPD says the department is increasing its police presence in the area to reassure the safety of the community.
"We understand there are circumstances that occur with an isolated incident and that does put fear in people, but we are doing everything we can," said Sgt. Genae Cook.
Police believe there was an altercation in the parking lot before the shooting. It is unknown if they were inside the mall before the incident.
Broken glass could be seen in the parking lot next to a vehicle.
"Based off the information that we have ... we have absolutely no reason to believe that we have any ongoing threat to the public and we believe that we have all the parties that were involved in the incident in custody," Leepper said.
Indianapolis resident Michael Hays says gun violence isn't the answer.
"I feel horrible for those parents. I've witnessed it for myself. I know people who have lost a child to gun violence," said Hays. "We cannot keep fracturing our neighborhoods with gunfire. We just can't keep doing it."
It's a message Craig echos.
"This is not us, violence is not us and we can come overcome. It just takes a community effort to overcome," said Craig. "Get connected with a mentor and reach out for help and drop the guns. That's not the solution."
Anyone with information can report it anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS. You can also contact Detective Gary Smith at the IMPD Homicide Office at 317.327.3475 or e-mail the detective at Gary.Smith@indy.gov.
IMPD officers located 2 individuals with injuries consistent with gunshot wounds. The area is secure and there is no known ongoing threat. This is a developing investigation. Media staging will be by the H&R Block. https://t.co/5KKN3XQANh— IMPD (@IMPDnews) January 4, 2023