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Fashion Island shopper: 'We were freaking out' when shots fired

December 15, 2012 |  6:09 pm

Newport Beach police are setting up a command post near the intersection of Newport Center and Anacapa drives after shots were fired at the Fashion Island mall Saturday afternoon, authorities said. 

Police have taken one man into custody, and officers are searching the mall but have not found anyone who may have been injured.

Shopper Dena Nassef said she and another person were walking toward Macy’s when people started yelling and running.

“With what happened in Connecticut, we were freaking out,” she said. “It was like crazy people leaving stores.”

Nassef said some people didn’t believe what was happening and started laughing. She said she and others were escorted into a Nordstrom sitting room to wait until authorities got the situation under control.

The gunman was reported to be in one of the parking structures, KTLA reported.

The shopping mall was on lockdown, and many shoppers posted messages on Facebook and Twitter saying they were locked inside stores. When the reports of shots were first posted around 4:35 p.m., the mall was crowded with holiday shoppers.

Shoppers who weren't locked in stores said they were getting to their cars to leave the mall.


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-- Lauren Williams in Newport Beach and Rosanna Xia in Los Angeles