Video shows SUV plowing through Illinois mall as shoppers scatter; driver in custody

Posted at 6:52 PM, Sep 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-20 18:52:38-04

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. — Police took a driver into custody after an SUV smashed its way through a suburban Illinois mall Friday afternoon, sending panicked shoppers running for safety and leaving a gaping hole in the doors of a Sears store.

Police rushed to the Woodfield Mall in Schaumberg around 2:30 p.m. after witnesses said a black SUV drove through Sears, striking several kiosks. The incident took place on the lower level of the mall.

video posted to Twitter shows a black SUV driving past a Forever 21, and people running away.

Lateef Farooqui was at the mall when the car drove through, and described the chaos. He said he was on the floor above where it happened. He said he heard people saying there were guns, but said it was probably just people panicking. He said people were running in every direction, and that security was telling people to run away.

Farooqui said he was walking nearby when the suspect was taken into custody.

“He was just quiet, head down, walking straight,” he said. “Not somebody wild, screaming. No chanting. Not any of those things you’d expect of somebody crazy.”

Schaumburg police said no injuries were reported. Police also said there was no evidence of an active shooter.

Police urged the public to avoid the area if possible. Police were still evacuating the mall around 3:30 p.m.

The Chicago FBI said they were aware of the incident and were assisting local law enforcement. They said there was no threat to public safety.

Schaumburg High School was placed on a soft lockdown after administrators received report of the mall incident.

“Upon resolution of the community incident, the police confirmed that no threat to students existed and the soft lockdown was ended,” Principal Tim Little said in a statement.

Students were released from school at the end of the day.

The identity of the SUV's driver was not immediately known.

**WARNING: Video below contains profanity.