Loud noise at Ontario Mills mall prompts some customers to shelter in place – Daily Bulletin



Shoppers leave Ontario Mills with their purchases Tuesday afternoon Sept. 1, 2020. (File photo by Will Lester, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin/SCNG)

A mall patron kicked a glass panel at Ontario Mills on Saturday, creating a loud sound that some mistook to be a gunshot, prompting several businesses to shelter in place and many people to flee the shopping center, authorities said.

Police officers who responded to the mall on 1 Mills Circle at 4:01 p.m. reviewed footage and confirmed the sound came from the mallgoer kicking the panel, said Ontario police Lt. Bill Russell, spokesman for the department. The individual appeared upset.

The panel was not damaged, there were no injuries, and police did not take anyone into custody.

Mallgoers took to social media to post accounts of the Saturday afternoon scare, some recalling dozens of people running toward exits, while others hid inside storage rooms with store employees.

“Once one person starts saying something, and it gets on social media, it’s like wildfire,” Russell said. “But I understand everyone’s concern.”

Police did not order any lockdowns, though some businesses had their staff and customers shelter in place, he said.

By 5 p.m., officers, including in an Ontario police helicopter, and fire personnel left the scene, while the mall had resumed normal operations, police said.

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