As the mall reopens on Monday, investigators say a journal belonging to the 19-year-old has been found, but they would only reveal that it “expressed general unhappiness” in the teen’s life. However, the contents were enough for an officer looking into the disappearance of Aguilar on the day of the shooting to worry about the teen’s safety.
Authorities have been able to piece together what happened on that fateful Saturday morning.
Police said Aguilar took a taxi to the Mall in Columbia in suburban Baltimore on Saturday morning and entered the building near Zumiez, a shop that sells skateboarding gear. He went downstairs to a food court directly below the store, then returned less than an hour later, dumped the backpack in a dressing room and started shooting.
Shoppers fled in a panic or barricaded themselves behind closed doors. When police arrived, they found three people dead — two store employees and Aguilar.
The shooting baffled investigators and acquaintances of Aguilar, a quiet, skinny teenager who graduated from high school less than a year ago and had no previous run-ins with law enforcement.
Aguilar, who had concealed the shotgun in a bag, fired six to nine times. One victim, Brianna Benlolo, a 21-year-old single mother, lived half a mile away from Aguilar in the same College Park neighborhood, but police said they were still trying to determine what, if any, relationship they had.
Tyler Johnson, also an employee at the store, was Aguilar’s second victim. A relative confirmed that Aguilar did not know or socialize with Johnson.
Zumiez chief executive Rick Brooks said in a statement that when the mall reopens, there will be memory books to sign and visitors will be invited to float flowers in the mall’s fountain in memory of Benlolo and Johnson.
“Counselors have met with the store team,” he said Sunday. “The emotions are very raw and real — and as co-workers and friends, we are pulling together.”
Police are continuing their investigation. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims’ families.
SOURCE: HuffPost | PHOTO CREDIT: Handout