Private Citizen Who Ended Indiana Mall Shooting Identified

Authorities have identified the citizen who took down the mass shooter at a Greenwood, Indiana, mall Sunday afternoon as well as the three victims.

A gunman opened fire inside the Greenwood Park Mall, about 15 miles south of Indianapolis, around 6 p.m. Sunday. He fired 24 rounds from an AR-15-type rifle in about two minutes, killing Pedro Pineda, 56, Rosa Mirian Rivera de Pineda, 37, and Victor Gomez, 30, all of Indianapolis. Another woman and a 12-year-old child were also injured in the attack.

Greenwood Police Chief James Ison identified the man who stopped the shooter during a Monday press conference as 22-year-old Elisjsha Dicken, of Seymour, Indiana. Dicken was at the mall shopping with his girlfriend. Ison described Dicken’s actions as “nothing short of heroic.”

Ison said Dicken engaged the gunman from some distance and was “very proficient” and “tactically sound” in the use of his handgun to stop the suspect. The chief said Dicken was motioning others to safety behind him as he moved in “to close in on the suspect.”

Dicken fired 10 rounds and as the gunman attempted to retreat to a restroom he fell to the ground after being shot.

Dicken’s brother Cameron told reporters on Tuesday that his little brother is an “amazing kid” who did something selfless “not for fame or glory but because he knew that he couldn’t just stand by and let it continue to happen.”

Attorney Guy A. Relford represents Dicken and told reporters that his client is a “true American hero who saved countless lives during a horrific event that could have been so much worse if not for Eli’s courage, preparedness, and willingness to protect others.”

Investigators said the gunman walked to the mall and entered a restroom where he remained for about an hour. When he emerged he opened fire on people at the mall’s food court.

The gunman has been identified as Johnathan Douglas Sapirman, 20, of Greenwood. Police said that he was armed with a Sig Sauer M400 semi-automatic rifle, another rifle, and a handgun. He also had more than 100 rounds of ammunition.

Family members told investigators that Sapirman had never shown violent tendencies toward them. The gunman lived alone and police found a burned laptop in the oven of his apartment. He left his cell phone in a toilet in the mall restroom before opening fire.

Dicken was legally carrying a firearm under the new Indiana constitutional carry law and was not required to have a permit. Chief Ison said on Monday, “Many more people would have died last night if not for the responsible armed citizen.”