Fashion

18-year-old charged after argument leads to gunfire at Fashion District


Prosecutors in Philadelphia announced charges against a young man accused of firing a gun inside an busy outlet mall on Tuesday night.

The District Attorney’s Office on Wednesday charged 18-year-old Samir Smith with aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, and weapons offenses.

Investigators say Smith and another person were arguing with a group inside the Fashion District around 6:30 pm when Smith left the building and fired one shot towards the group.

Inspector DF Pace told reporters after the shooting that an officer on patrol heard the gunshot and responded to the scene.

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A nearly full ammo clip fell out of the suspect’s gun during the shooting, which investigators say prevented more shots from being fired.

Authorities report that one man suffered a minor shrapnel injury after a bullet ricochet off a granite wall.

Smith was taken into custody by police at a restaurant on the 100 block of North 10th Street, according to police.

Police say they have officers stationed in and outside the mall, something they say they increased in recent weeks due to issues with large groups of juveniles congregating in Center Cityon Market Street.

A business owner that asked to remain anonymous says their store manager was threatened and had to lock their doors several times.

“It doesn’t seem that an officer on patrol even acts as a deterrent to some of these young people,” Mayor Jim Kenney stated.

Labor Day weekend, police say a juvenile fired shots right in front of officers at 9th and Market. That juvenile was arrested. This past weekend, police say they had trouble clearing nearly 100 teens on Market Street.

“They were giving the police officers a hard time, physically. None of the police officers were physically injured,” Philadelphia Police Deputy Commissioner Joel Dales said. “It’s a challenge. We’re doing our part. We’re locking up the individuals . They have to suffer the consequences.”

Mayor Kenney added, “People need to be held accountable for their actions. That’s out of our hands and in the hands of the DA.”

But, when pressed about the DA, Myor Kenney said they have regular, friendly conversations and talk about specific cases.

Police say all patrol shifts city-wide will exten by an extra four hours this weekend.

“The events for which Samir Smith is alleged to be responsible created panic among workers and bystanders in and around a busy shopping center,” DA Larry Krasner said.

“The traumatizing experiencing of hearing gunfire and fleeing gunfire is uniquely American, because we have the resources and the power to prevent gun violence.”

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