Crime

Man dies in Peachtree Mall shooting

Peachtree Mall shooting witness describes the scene

Jonathan Evans, 42, of Columbus, said he saw the victim outside of Peachtree Mall in Columbus just moments after the shooting.
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Jonathan Evans, 42, of Columbus, said he saw the victim outside of Peachtree Mall in Columbus just moments after the shooting.

At least one man is dead after he was shot multiple times Saturday evening at Peachtree Mall.

Anthony Meredith, 24, was pronounced dead of multiple gunshot wounds at 8:05 p.m. at Midtown Medical Center, said Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan.

Police Maj. Gil Slouchick of the Investigative Bureau confirmed that officers were investigating a shooting at the entrance of Peachtree Mall, 3131 Manchester Expressway. Police used yellow tape to seal off the main entrance of the mall to look for clues in the shooting. Officers were using flashlights to look for possible shell casings from the gun fired at the victim.

Jonathan Evans, 42, of Columbus, said he was in Macy’s shopping with his wife when he heard a commotion at the store. He said a woman then told him a shooting had just occurred.

Evans immediately left the department store through a side door near the west side and walked around to the front.

“Once we got to the front, we noticed a gentleman laying at the entrance of mall,” he said. “He had been shot.”

Evans described the wounds to the victim as four or five shots with one in his arm and possibly four in his chest. Near the victim was a friend holding his hand and two women looking down at him.

A cousin of the victim was in the parking lot. The cousin said he had gone to his car but should have been with the victim.

“It was a lot of confusion,” Evans said. “When you hear shooting at the mall, everyone tends to run and try to getaway. No one knew where the shooting was taking place. When you got outside you could see crowds of people running from that area.”

About a half of dozen police cars were at the shopping mall as personnel worked the scene in front of the main entrance.

The shooting is the third report of gunfire at the shopping mall in more than a month. A 16-year-old girl was shot in the back on March 4 in an apparent dispute. Police also investigated an apparent gunshot fired into the floor a week before. Police believe a gun discharged in the pocket of a shopper.

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