WHITEHALL TWP., Pa. -- Police are searching for a suspect or suspects after shots were fired on the lower level of the Lehigh Valley Mall Saturday afternoon.
Officials said there are no reports of any victims.
Whitehall Township Police Chief Michael Marks holds a news conference Saturday night, hours after gunshots rang out in the Lehigh Valley Mall.
Reports indicated shots were fired by the Modell's store just before 5 p.m. Police said whoever opened fire then took off.
According to Whitehall Police Chief Michael Marks, multiple casings were found, but no word on the exact number of shots fired.
"The responding officers needed to get into the mall and make sure there was no active gunfire occurring at the moment," Marks said. "As far as our secondary operations right now, that's just making sure that the mall is empty and we were able to account for everybody employed or at least at the mall at that point."
Marks said authorities are interviewing dozens of witnesses hoping to piece together a description of one or more shooters.
"We're also asking for the public's help," Marks said. "If they have any cell phone video, video that was taken inside the mall of this incident."
Shoppers were told to shelter in place while authorities spent hours clearing the mall.
Gun shots were fired at lehigh valley mall pic.twitter.com/nyFT56Yxlu— Esat (@Esacarat) September 19, 2020
69 News spoke to the families of two people who were in the mall at the time and both said their family members were forced to hide in the back of stores after they heard shots.
“Kids were really upset and kids were crying," said Lucy Usoyan, who was in the mall at the time. "That’s what makes me really upset."
She said she heard three gunshots and initially thought it was a prank.
Another shopper recounted his experience while in lockdown.
"We ran to the back and we had to wait," said Ronny Garcia. "About 34 minutes. They had to get us out a little early. One of the ladies that was there actually went into semi-labor. She was having contractions."
Cheryl Furler, an associate at Bath & Body Works, said that she was locked-in with about 50 other people in the stockroom.
"We barricaded the doors. There's no way to lock the doors, even into the stockroom," she said. "So we took filing cabinets and pushed them up against the doors."
Authorities have not confirmed any additional details and are currently looking into surveillance video.
The Whitehall Township Police Department is requesting that anyone who is aware of witnesses, videos or information related to this incident to contact them via the Lehigh County Communications Center at 610-437-5252.