Killeen: Local residents & shop owners concerned after mall shooting

Neighbors and business owners are concerned for their safety after the Killeen mall shooting Tuesday night.
Published: Dec. 8, 2021 at 7:08 PM CST
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KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) - Neighbors and business owners are concerned for their safety after the Killeen mall shooting Tuesday night.

For local shop Owner Gerry Ramstone, he says it’s a terrible situation that he’ll never forget.

“I wasn’t even allowed in the mall,” he said.

“I would’ve run for her just like every other parent or shop owner that cares for their employees.”

Ramstone left work just ten minutes before the shooting and stayed on the phone with his employee inside the mall to keep her calm.

“I told her to push her desks up on the door and police would later identify themselves,” he said.

“I was constantly calling security, talking to the sheriff, police. She said, “We’ll what defense do I have?” And I said, we sell crystals…. By barricading yourself and not trying to out run them, you’re gonna keep yourself safe.”

Authorities eventually safely escorted his employee and other customers out of the building. This morning, many neighbors that live close to the mall say they were surprised at the business as usual attitude; and are concerned for their safety.

“It’s a little odd because I got a text message from the mall today, telling me about some great deals they had and it kinda seemed a little odd just to keep going on after so many went through this,” said Jeff Thompson.

“It was very stressful last night, especially for my children. They were very worried that he was in the area, so they had me check everything. They wanted to sleep with us in the bed, literally. They were just worried.”

Ramstone and Thompson add while things could’ve been much worse, they will remain on high alert until the suspect is arrested.

“Nobody has insurance for tomorrow,” Ramstone said.

“You never know when your loved one is going to be trapped in a school, university or a mall and be a victim to someone who’s lost their marbles.”

“Hopefully, we find out the root cause of this is actually and we tackle it instead of just putting it under the rug again and say it’s another day in Killeen,” Thompson said.

Anyone with information on the suspect is encouraged to contact the Killeen Police Department or the Bell County Crime Stoppers.

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