This story is developing.
Per Joy105, Police are searching for a man who threatened to kill himself, which caused mass hysteria at Memorial City Mall on Sunday afternoon.
It was reported at 3:15 p.m. that a man wearing a red half-mask entered the food court, jumped on a table, raised his hands, yelled that he was going to kill himself and dropped an unknown device on the floor, police said.
“It was at least 300 to 400 people just running, and at that moment, your mind just goes to fight or flight,” said shopper Mohamed Mabizari.
Police said the object was wrapped in toilet paper and a plastic bag. K-9s detected no explosive devices or firearms involved in the chaos. Police said no threat was found. It was previously reported that a man set off fireworks at the mall, but no fireworks were detected.
Margaret Rutherford was watching a movie in the theater when the reports of an active shooter started circulating.
“I’m trying to calm myself back down because they told us it was a shooter, and there’s been so many shootings,” Rutherford said.
Hundreds of people rushed out of a Houston mall on Sunday after a masked man jumped on a food court table and said he would kill himself before throwing down an unknown object covered in toilet paper.
Houston police are searching for the masked man, who they say left Memorial City Mall amid the chaos. Police said he could face a terroristic threats charge.
Authorities told Houston media outlets that the suspect could be seen on surveillance video going into the food court area of the mall just before 3:15 p.m., jumping on a table and saying he was going to kill himself. He then threw the unknown object onto the ground.
Panic ensued as shoppers rushed to the exits. Videos circulated throughout social media that showed people running through the mall.
Initial reports from inside the mall at the time of the incident claimed there was active shooter, but police quickly said there was no shooter. There were also initial reports that there were firecrackers set off inside the mall, but police later said that didn’t happen.
“We don’t take this type of thing lightly,” Police Assistant Chief Sheryl Victorian said.
Police said two people at the Houston mall suffered minor injuries in the crowd.