CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. (WHDH) – Chaos erupted in a Coral Springs mall after a store owner opened fire, Saturday morning, killing himself and injuring an employee.
Coral Springs Police said the Coral Square Mall was locked down and evacuated at around 10 a.m. Investigators said the owner of the Fast-Fix jewelry store and repair shop and his employee were treated for gunshot wounds but later confirmed the store owner died.
“One of the employees that works in Macy’s said she heard ‘bam, bam, bam,’ said David Wagie, who lives nearby.
June White, who works at the mall, said that she heard the gunshots. “Four very loud shots,” she said. “Police running every which way. Didn’t take them long to get in that building.”
According to police, the shooting took place after 59-year-old Gus Kiriazis got into a disagreement with one of his employees, identified as 52-year-old Sabas Ferrer. Kiriazis returned to the store with a gun where he shot Ferrer before turning the gun on himself.
Officials said a third person was hurt after falling.
A shopper recorded cellphone video as police rushed into the mall.
An employee who works in the mall knew something was happening when police began to rush inside. “He came through with an AR-15, and he was running through, and then I saw another guy and all of a sudden, I saw this undercover lady with an AR-15,” said Markus, who did not want to release his last name. “I’m like, ‘OK, something’s going on.’ And that’s why someone came to our gate and said, ‘Pull the gate down.’”
Shoppers and employees who were evacuated expressed their fear. “It was scary, ’cause you don’t think coming to work, something like that would happen,” said one store employee.
Those who previously knew both men said Kiriazis has had issues with Ferrer for some time, but were shocked at the deadly result.
“We don’t know the motive at this time,” said Coral Springs Police Detective Ernesto Bruna. “We know that, unfortunately, the owner took his own life after shooting the victim. The victim was transported to the hospital in critical condition and, I believe at this time, he’s in stable condition.”
“It’s sad, because you don’t feel secure no more,” said one shopper. “You go over here to shop and you want to spend time with the family, and then this happens. It’s sad.”
Ferrer remains at Broward Health North in stable condition.
Police continue to investigate.
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