THOUSAND OAKS (CBSLA) — A confrontation with someone not wearing a face mask led to a fight inside the The Oaks shopping mall in Thousand Oaks, along with reports of an active shooter and a major response from local police.
Deputies were called the mall, 222 W. Hillcrest Drive, at about 6:40 p.m. Saturday after callers to 911 reported shots fired and seeing a man pointing a gun inside the mall, according to Ventura County sheriff’s officials.READ MORE: Police Identify Homeless Man Arrested In Palisades Fire
The reports of shots fired turned out to be false. Other callers reported as many as five people fighting, and that an off-duty Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy pulled his concealed handgun to stop the fight.
The chaotic scene apparently started with two men confronting a third because he was not wearing a face mask inside the mall.
“As the melee became increasingly violent, the off-duty law enforcement officer identified himself and confronted the man with his handgun to stop the fight,” according to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department.
The melee drew 16 sheriff’s patrol units to the mall. Shoppers took to social media to describe the chaotic and frightening scene.
As I was walking around the oaks mall a crowd of people start running to the door and someone shouts shooter so my boyfriend told me to run and it was honestly one of the most scariest things everREAD MORE: Sole Folks: One-Of-A-Kind Leimert Park Cooperative Provides Home, Platform For Talented Black Artists
— Angela💫 (@angelaauuhhh) December 6, 2020
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My heart started pounding as I ran out with my mom sister aunt cousin & two nephews ! Thankfully we were in a good spot near the exits & near our cars
— kristen 🎄 (@lavenderniaIII) December 6, 2020
Authorities say none of the people involved in the fight wanted to pursue criminal charges. Only minor injuries were reported, and no shots were fired.