Reported shooting, fight draws heavy police response to Great Mall in Milpitas

MILPITAS, Calif. (KGO) -- Multiple agencies across the South Bay responded to the Great Mall in Milpitas Friday night after a reported shooting.

"Everyone was panicking. Everyone was just trying to get in the back of the store," said shopper Louie Boccaleoni.

RELATED: Officials give 'all-clear' after reported shooting prompts lockdown at Great Mall in Milpitas

Around 5:30 p.m., Milpitas police received reports of a fight, possibly involving a knife, that had broken out among several people inside the mall.

"When they arrived at the scene, there was also unrelated reports of a possible shooting that had occurred within the Burlington Coat Factory store located on mall property," said Milpitas Police Department Captain John Torrez.

Those separate incidents sent the mall into lockdown as people, seeing others running away from the pandemonium, assumed there was an active shooter.

Milpitas police says they found no evidence of a shooting within the mall.

Law enforcement's response was both quick and forceful with San Jose PD, CHP and the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office all responding along with the Milpitas Police Department.

"Unfortunately, in the world we live in, this is too commonplace. But, because of that, we do train to great lengths to respond to situations like that," Torrez said.

Similar incidents have occurred several times at the Great Mall over the past several years.

RELATED: Police searching for 3 suspects after jewelry store robbery at Great Mall in Milpitas

"This I believe would be probably the third time within the last two years that we responded in this manner to an incident that's occurred at the Great Mall," Torrez said.

Experiences that some mall employees say helped to prepare them for Friday's events.

"Working at Great Mall, this type of thing usually does occur a lot. So we were just pretty much equipped to try to stay calm to get through it." said Ryan Tran.
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