US Gun Epidemic: 4 People Killed, Including Gunman, In Indiana Mall Shooting

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At least four people were killed, including the shooter, and another three were injured following a shooting incident at a mall in the US state of Indiana on Sunday.

The incident took place outside a shopping mall in Greenwood after a man carrying a rifle and several magazines of ammunition entered the mall’s food court and started firing, local police said.

The authorities did not suggest a motive for the shooting and did not identify the gunman.

“We experienced a mass shooting this evening at the Greenwood Park Mall,” Mark Myers, the mayor of Greenwood, said in a statement. “We have three fatalities at this time and three others injured.”

“I’ve been a police officer most of my life,” he said in an interview. “Still, this is incredibly shocking, to not only me but our entire community.”

He said the assailant was shot dead by “an armed individual”, a 22-year-old bystander who was present at the scene right at the onset of the shooting and fatally shot the gunman.

“The real hero of the day is the citizen that was lawfully carrying a firearm in that food court and was able to stop the shooter almost as soon as he began,” Greenwood Police Department Chief Jim Ison said, according to the Indianapolis Star.

The attack is the latest in a continuous wave of gun violence across the United States.

Police in the city of Charlotte, North Carolina, reported earlier on Sunday that two people had been shot dead in separate shooting incidents in the city.

Sunday’s shootings come just a fortnight after the July 4 shootings, a time when Americans normally gather for barbecues, parades and fireworks.

In the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, seven people were killed and 47 others were injured after a gunman opened fire from a rooftop on parade festivities.

In New York City, 13 people were shot and three killed in six incidents across the city. In Virginia, six people were shot while in Texas three officers and one civilian were injured in a shooting.

The shootings followed two massacres in May that saw 10 Black people gunned down at an upstate New York supermarket, and 19 children and two teachers slain at an elementary school in Texas.

The surge in gun violence in the country comes as firearm purchases rose to record levels in 2020 and 2021.

The rate of gun deaths hit the highest level since 1995, with more than 45,000 fatalities each year.

With gun epidemic assuming alarming proportions in the country, US President Joe Biden last week described everyday places in America as “killing fields”.

Last month, he signed into law the first major gun safety legislation passed by Congress in three decades.

Titled the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the bills are the most significant federal legislation to address gun violence since the assault weapons ban of 1994.

The US president acknowledged that the law falls far short of what he and his party had advocated for to stop the alarming frequency of shootings in the US.

“It will not save every life from the epidemic of gun violence, but if this law had been in place years ago, even this last year, lives would have been saved. It matters. It matters. But it’s not enough and we all know that,” he said.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, an independent data collection organization, about 40,000 deaths a year are caused by firearms in the United States.

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