Authorities continue their investigation of a shooting at Riverchase Galleria shopping mall, Friday, July 3, 2020, in Hoover, Ala., that left an 8-year-old boy dead and three other people hospitalized. (Carol Robinson/The Birmingham News via AP)
UPDATED 3:50 PM PT — Saturday, July 4, 2020
Officials of Hoover, Alabama have spoken out regarding a deadly shooting at a local mall, which left one 8-year-old dead and three others injured.
On Friday, authorities identified the victim as Royta Giles Jr. They confirmed the boy was on his way to school when he was fatally shot at the Riverchase Galleria mall.
According to police, multiple shots were reported near the food court. Witnesses claimed the shooter was a man, who could be heard yelling “clear this out” as he opened fire inside the mall.
“The police department responded to reports of shots fired through the Riverchase Galleria around the food court, with multiple victims shot,” stated Hoover Police Chief Nick Derzis. “I’m extremely saddened to report that an 8-year-old male victim was pronounced deceased shortly after arriving at the children’s hospital.”
Those who were wounded were transported to the hospital, where they remain in unknown condition.
While officials have not named a suspect or any leads, authorities have described the incident as heartbreaking. The city’s mayor also shared his condolences.
“I visited with the parents of the child that we lost, and this was just a very senseless tragedy. …You know, senseless violence is not limited to the Riverchase Galleria or Hoover, Alabama. This type of incident is something that we’re seeing across the nation. It’s really become a commentary on our society as a whole.” – Frank Brocato, Mayor of Hoover, Alabama
The investigation remains ongoing.