A stabbing incident in a Macy’s store at the Mall of America on Sunday night was part of “an interrupted theft,” according to Bloomington police.
The suspect was arrested, and victims were taken to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis with non-life-threatening injuries, Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts said at a news briefing.
Police said they took Mahad Abdiaziz Abdirahaman , 20, of Minneapolis into custody after the incident. The suspect had superficial injuries, and is being held on two counts of 1st degree assault, police said.
The incident began in a fitting room in the men’s department at Macy’s around 6:45 p.m. Police said that two men were trying on clothes and walked out of the fitting room to show others in their group. While they were outside, the suspect went into the fitting room and tried to steal some of the men’s belongings.
When they noticed what the suspect was doing, he pulled a knife on the men he was robbing and stabbed them. Other shoppers were able to wrest the knife away from the suspect and subdue him until police arrived, Potts said.
Potts said the suspect had minor injuries and was not taken to the hospital.
Kim Schwieters of Grant, Minn., was shopping with her three children when she saw police running towards the Macy’s entrance. “By the time we got to the main area — the men’s department is to the right — more police started running in with their guns drawn,” she said, noting, “My daughter could see people lying on the ground who had been stabbed.”
The police yelled at everyone in the store to clear the area and then locked down the main level, she said.
Schwieters said she also talked to a man who may have seen the suspect before the stabbing, but she did not give a description of the robber, either.
“He saw the man walking through before, talking to himself, really really loudly talking to himself,” she said. “Kind of drew attention to himself.”
One woman who witnessed the violence tweeted this: “Just lived through the scariest experience of my life. I heard someone screaming, ‘He got me! He got me!’ I knew something was not right. Some other shoppers ran toward the screaming, and someone (who I believe was the victim’s brother) yelled ‘911!’ I called the police and hid.”
Most of the shops closed at 7 p.m. Sunday; some restaurants stayed open until 9 p.m.
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