Police shoot man after shots fired at mall

Police shoot man after shots fired at mall

EUGENE, Ore. - Police officers shot and wounded a man who allegedly fired a gun at cars at the Valley River Center mall Wednesday afternoon.

The investigation started with a report of shots fired in the mall parking lot. Police said the shooter hit two cars in the vicinity of Firestone and JC Penny's. No one was injured.

Police got a cell phone number for the suspect, 27-year-old Michael Thomas Mason, from a relative, Police Chief Pete Kerns said.

That enabled crisis negotiators to talk to Mason as police tracked him down.

Less than an hour later, police caught up with him on Zane Lane off River Road. Chief Kerns said that when Mason stopped driving, he showed some threatening behavior.

"The suspect's hands and body were constantly in motion," Kerns said. "Throughout the front portion interior of the vehicle, his behavior was unpredictable and did not comply with officers clear instructions."

Kerns said that's when Sgt. Bill Solesbee and Officer Marcus Pope shot the suspect.

"I heard police coming this way, sirens very quickly," said witness Darrell Bassett. "I heard the sirens stop right down here and right after that I believe I heard three shots."

Police gave first aid to the suspect until medics arrived and took him to the hospital.

A state-mandated interagency deadly force team is reviewing the shooting. As is standard in such situations, both officers are on paid administrative leave.

Solesbee has been with EPD since 1995. Pope joined the force in 2004.

KVAL News covered this story as it unfolded Wednesday at sheldon.kval.com and riverroadsantaclara.kval.com