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Mass shooting at downtown eatery in Atlanta

The violent episode happened at the popular food court area at Peachtree Center downtown
Photo credit: / YES Market Media

Gunfire injured multiple people during a mass shooting at a popular food court in downtown Atlanta before the suspect was shot and disarmed by police.

The three victims were rushed to hospitals in proximity to the shooting location, CNN reports. The 47-year-old man, 69-year-old woman, and 70-year-old woman reportedly did not suffer life-threatening injuries. 

The condition of the 34-year-old shooting suspect, who has a long criminal record, has not been divulged by the Atlanta Police Department Tuesday afternoon.

Police Chief Darin Schierbaum told the assembled media at the press conference that the unnamed armed suspect entered the Peachtree Center food court, which is heavily populated with people, stores, eateries, and specialty shops, at approximately 2 p.m.

They are unable to specify the exact activity that precipitated the mass shooting. But Schierbaum said the suspect got into a “brief altercation” with another individual before he assaulted the person and then shot the victim.

The suspect then reportedly shot two more people in the food court area. An off-duty Atlanta police officer working nearby rushed to the scene and shot and wounded the suspect. Another member of the APD then quickly kicked the assailant’s gun away and ensured the suspect was immobilized.

The police chief praised the officer for his valor and for taking quick, decisive action.

“He acted decisively, placed himself in danger and ended that threat for the community,” Schierbaum said, according to CNN. 

Schierbaum told the media that the suspected shooter is a convicted felon who’d been imprisoned for armed robbery and has “11 previous arrest cycles.” 

He said, “This is an individual that should never have been possessing a gun and an individual that should never have placed this community in harm.”

As the Georgia Bureau of Investigation takes over the probe to determine the specifics of why this shooting took place, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens mentioned how the Peachtree Center food court attracts a broad section of the population into one area.

“This is a busy area. This is where people work, and this is where people dine while they are at work so a lunchtime crowd was there and it was fairly active,” Mayor Dickens said.

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