A man pulled out a gun inside a Dave & Busters arcade at Dolphin Mall on Sunday evening, according to Sweetwater officials.
Sweetwater Mayor Orlando Lopez told the Miami Herald that police told him the man was ”defending his girlfriend after a squabble ensued.”
“There was some sort of altercation between his girlfriend and somebody else. That’s when he took out his gun,” Lopez said.
The man, who holds a concealed weapons permit, did not fire the weapon. Sweetwater police, which did not identify the man, later arrested him on charges of carrying a firearm inside an establishment that serves alcohol.
But whether or not the man was a permit holder wasn’t of concern for Magaly Perez, a grandmother was at the arcade with her family and 3-year-old granddaughter, she said. She told the Miami Herald that “at no time did staff alert anyone that there was a problem or help get people to safety.”
“In front of children he pulled a gun with the intent to use it. People were panicking and started running,” Perez wrote in an email. “We didn’t want to get trampled in the melee so we ran towards the back to find an exit and there was none. We couldn’t find an exit and were trapped.“
Perez said she called other family members in the dining area who were never alerted of the situation.
We ultimately “found that the exit sign we were following didn’t lead to an exit and the closest exit wasn’t marked and was painted black surrounded by black curtains,” Perez said. “If there was a fire or a mass shooter or someone else had decided to play cowboy, I can’t even think what would have happened.”
One Dave & Busters employee who answered the phone Sunday night hung up on a Herald reporter.
This story will be updated when more information becomes available.