Police Report Explains Confusion Over "Gunman" at Aventura Mall Movie Theater
William's wife and Marko's stepmother, Vivi Mejia, received the call to bring the proper paperwork to prove William was indeed Marko's father. "Marko was only here for vacation," she tells New Times. His father is currently with him in Colombia (where Mejia is originally from) to seek treatment.
"The boy lose his mind; he start calling his father with another name [sic]" Mejia explains to New Times. "He hit him, and somebody else come took my husband trying to help the boy; people didn't know it was his father. [Then] all the people start running saying the boy has a gun. It was only lies."
Mejia cannot remember what movie they were watching that night, but she knows it was a comedy. Her husband later told her that it was a scene in the film when police were shaking their hands violently for a long time and that is what sparked the teen's violent episode. "He is under medication since four years ago," Mejia says. "He has some mental issues, and that was all in that moment that the boy lose his mind for any reason [sic]."
The teen was hospitalized overnight Saturday and released the following day. Mejia's husband is not upset with how the incident was handled, Mejia says. "He knows these things happen; he understands the situation."
In the immediate aftermath, patrons were desperate for an explanation. Other than the fewer-than-140-character statement, Aventura Mall and the movie theater were vague and slow to dispel information, which made people suspicious.
My daughter had witness everything while hiding under a table in JR, there is a lot more that they are not disclosing @jess_swansonn— Sil (@astromarina) January 20, 2014
Aventura Mall is lying, they told someone that someone yelled gun and that's it, but there's pictures, wow so full of shit— råçhel☾ (@twerkDMATB) January 19, 2014
If you're at Aventura mall LEAVE. Gun man near H&M and apparently shots were fired.— jeanette t. (@VHTru_) January 19, 2014
Without an actual smoking gun, people felt that the Twitter photo of the shattered glass door proved a gun was fired. But according to the police report, "damage to the glass doors was reported from the large crowd that crashed against the doors exiting during the incident."
Shooting at AVENTURA mall tonight! My daughter and I were there! Wtf!?? pic.twitter.com/bAVM3R1OoD— sara bassan (@sarapty) January 19, 2014
The heightened media attention on mass shootings have made people uneasy, especially in movie theaters. Five days before the Aventura Mall incident, a man was shot at a movie theater in Tampa for texting. And in July 2012, 12 people were murdered in a movie theater in Colorado.
Aventura Mall is the third-largest mall in the country.