Authorities have identified the three victims who died in a shooting at an Indiana mall on Sunday, their disturbed killer and the bystander hero who shot him to death, and likely saved many others from being shot.
An Indianapolis husband and wife identified as Pedro Pineda, 56, and Rosa Mirian Rivera de Pineda, 37, as well as Victor Gomez, 30, were fatally injured when Jonathan Sapirman opened fire on shoppers inside Greenwood Park. Mall shortly before 6 pm the police and the local coroner announced on Monday.
Sapirman, 20, was also killed when he was shot by a legally armed man who was in the mall shopping with his girlfriend at the time, Greenwood Police Chief James Ison said at a news conference.
That buyer, 22-year-old Elisjsha Dicken of Seymour, shot and killed Sapirman with a pistol two minutes after the shooting began.
He was praised for his heroic efforts at the press conference.
“We are so thankful for a 22-year-old who stopped this violent act,” said Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers. “This young man, the Good Samaritan from Greenwood, acted in seconds, stopped the shooter and saved countless lives.”
Sapirman, who quit his warehouse job and was facing eviction from his home, entered the mall shortly before 5 p.m. and went straight to a bathroom near the food court where he spent more than an hour preparing for the shooting. Ison said.
An hour and two minutes later, he came out of the bathroom and immediately began firing a rifle at people in the food court, first at Gomez and then at the Pinedas.
The gunman also shot a 22-year-old woman in the leg. She is recovering at an area hospital.
A 12-year-old girl also received medical treatment after a bullet fragment hit her in the back and ricocheted off a wall inside the mall, Ison said.
Two minutes after Sapirman opened fire, Dicken engaged him, firing 10 rounds at him from a distance. Sapirman attempted to retreat to the bathroom for cover, but was mortally wounded and fell to the ground.
Police said Dicken, who was legally carrying the firearm, has no military background or police training, but showed smart and brave instincts.
“His actions were nothing short of heroic,” Ison said. “He engaged the shooter from a considerable distance with a pistol, he was very skilled at it, very sensible tactically and as he moved to get closer to the suspect, he also signaled people to get out behind him.”
Sapirman, who has no criminal record other than minor minor engagements, fired 24 rounds from an AR-15-style rifle in the two minutes before he was taken out.
“Many more people would have died last night if it weren’t for a responsible armed citizen who acted very quickly,” Ison said.
Police recovered a second rifle, a handgun, several magazines and more than 100 rounds of ammunition that were on the shooter and hidden in the mall’s bathroom. Officers also recovered Sapirman’s cell phone, which he flushed down a toilet in a bathroom.
Investigators later collected the gunman’s laptop from his apartment, which was inside a high-heat oven along with a can of butane.
The FBI is attempting to recover data from both devices, which were damaged by Sapirman’s actions.
Ison said there is no known motive at this point in the investigation.
Sapirman’s relatives told police he showed no indication he was violent or unstable.
The 20-year-old had legally purchased the rifle he used in the March shooting and frequently visited a nearby shooting range, the family said.
The attack was the latest in a series of deadly mass shootings that have plagued the US and claimed the lives of scores of Americans.
Mass shooters have targeted schools, churches, grocery stores, a 4th of July parade and now a shopping mall in recent months, making almost nowhere safe for people simply going about their daily lives.