Crime

Lockdown lifted at Westland Mall after false reports of shots fired, mayor says

Hialeah mayor confirms false alarm at Westland Mall

Hialeah mayor Carlos Hernandez confirms to the Miami Herald that reports of an active shooter inside Westland Mall were false and the mall would be reopening on Nov. 24, 2017.
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Hialeah mayor Carlos Hernandez confirms to the Miami Herald that reports of an active shooter inside Westland Mall were false and the mall would be reopening on Nov. 24, 2017.

A lockdown at Hialeah Westland Mall was lifted Friday afternoon after various false reports of shots fired circulated on social media earlier in the day.

Black Friday shoppers were placed on lockdown as Hialeah police and emergency officials searched the shopping center. About an hour later, the city’s mayor said the scene was clear.

“We went ahead and searched the whole mall; everything was clear,” said Hialeah Mayor Carlos Hernandez “Apparently, it was a false alarm, thank God. We’re opening the mall right now as we speak.”

Hialeah police said that around 1:50 p.m., officers responded to “reports of shots being fired.”

“Officers canvassed and searched the mall and did not locate any suspects or victims,” said Hialeah police spokesman Eddie Rodriguez. “We have not been able to confirm any shots being fired nor anyone who witnessed anyone shooting. We will begin our investigation, as to where the call originated from.”

Video posted on Facebook shows shoppers running from the mall and police headed toward it.

A video making the rounds on social media shows panicked shoppers running out of Hialeah's Westland Mall after reporters of a shooter on Nov. 24, 2017.

Black Friday shoppers at the Westland Mall in Hialeah run for safety after reports of a shooting.

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