One person was taken into in custody and another person was unharmed after a shooting and car crash outside The Gardens Mall on Friday afternoon, city police said.
Palm Beach Gardens police were called to the Macy’s parking lot on the south side of the mall at 2 p.m. to reports of a shooting. A white Audi with several bullet holes was found crashed nearby on Gardens Parkway, on the north side of the PGA Boulevard shopping complex, between the La Posada and Mira Flores residential communities.
The car’s hood was up and its doors were opened as police taped off the area and conducted their investigation. The car had hit a pole and then stopped in front of a tree.
No one was injured in the incident, said Deputy Chief Sean Broedell of Palm Beach Gardens Fire Rescue.
Police said the incident was not random and that the two people involved knew each other. Neither the person who was shot at or the alleged gunman had been identified as of 5 p.m. Friday.
Police said the gunman was in custody but did not provide any charges stemming from the incident. As of 5 p.m., Major Eduardo Guillen said officers were working on charges.
About an hour after the shooting, city Fire Rescue trucks were leaving the scene as city police took down some of the crime-scene tape in the mall parking lot. The car was towed soon afterward, and Gardens Parkway had completely reopened to traffic at about 5 p.m.
The last shooting at The Gardens Mall was in 2015 when a security guard fired four shots at two people attempting a robbery. On April 15, two people tried to take more than $4,000 in handbags right after the store opened that morning.
The alleged robbers pushed one security guard to the ground and ran out with the armed guard, Jose L. Sanchez, chasing behind them. Sanchez shot a warning shot into the air, and then three more shots into the back of the getaway vehicle, according to authorities. The alleged robbers were arrested soon afterward.
On Friday, stores at the mall closed briefly during the investigation but soon reopened, according to a witness inside the mall during the incident. Santa’s Arrival Dance Party went on as planned Friday evening, with a DJ, stilt walkers and jugglers and the opportunity to take photos with Santa.
With the upcoming holidays, the shooting Friday brought back memories of the Christmas Eve murder at the Boynton Beach Mall in 2006.
Berno Charlemond, 24, was shot dead in the crowded mall in front of the FYE music store by Wilson Pierre, according to authorities. Police said the shooting was gang-related.
In Pierre’s second trial —after his conviction was overturned in the first because a judge ruled the jurors were given wrong instructions — he was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 40 years in prison.