A grillz store owner described the horrifying scene as she watched a 17-year-old die inside her shop during Wednesday’s shooting inside Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas.
An argument between four young men, identified as being in their late teens to early 20s by police, broke out in front of Greatest Grillz near the food court of the mall, owner Ana Garard told The Post on Friday.
“The kid died here in the store; it’s been really tough,” she said.
The mall shooting has hit the community hard and re-opened old wounds, as a mass shooting took place in 2019 at a Walmart just yards from the mall where 23 people were murdered by Patrick Crusius, who this week pleaded guilty to the racially motivated murders.
Garard said she did not know what sparked Wednesday’s gunfight, but it turned violent when someone opened fire in front of her business — causing panic and chaos among shoppers.
After shots rang out, the injured teen ran into the store that sells flashy dental accessories where Garard was working, where he bled out.
Garard, who has personally also had to deal with the death of a child, said she could not release more information about what happened before she meets with the deceased teen’s mother.
“She contacted me through mutual people we know,” she said. “Before I say anything more, I want to give her the opportunity to ask what she wants. If there’s anything I can do as a mother to help her, I’m going to give her that.”
Local police have yet to announce charges against anyone after initially saying there were two shooters on the day of the incident.
A spokesman told The Post the department is awaiting ballistic analysis and combing through evidence.
A fight involving four people, two in each group, led to the shooting, The El Paso Police Department stated during a press conference Thursday, adding no one other than those four people were hurt.
The names of the young man who died and the three wounded have not been released, as the others remain in the hospital.
On Aug. 3, 2019, a gunman whose hate filled manifesto was uploaded online just moments before he walked into the super center store with an AK-47– murdering 23 victims simply because they were Hispanic.
Patrick Crusius pleaded guilty to 90 federal hate crime charges on Feb. 8 after he was spared the death penalty by federal prosecutors. He could be put to death by Texas if he’s found guilty of capital punishment charges against him in an upcoming state case.