1 killed, 1 charged in Knoxville Center Mall shooting

1 killed, 1 charged in Knoxville Center Mall shooting

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The shooting took place in Reno Menswear around 4:30 p.m. The shooting took place in Reno Menswear around 4:30 p.m.

KNOXVILLE (WATE) -- An employee of Reno Menswear was shot and killed Wednesday afternoon at Knoxville Center Mall. The suspect was wounded, arrested and charged.

The victim was Ahmed Nahl, 29, originally from Egypt.

The suspect is William Johnson, 42, of Knoxville.

Johnson is charged with one count of felony murder, one count of aggravated kidnapping and two counts of attempted murder for each police officer he shot at.

The shooting took place in the menswear store around 4:30 p.m.

Johnson was hit twice by responding officers and taken to UT Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.

Police say Johnson was involved in a confrontation with Nahl and shot Nahl multiple times with a small handgun. Nahl was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police haven't described the confrontation further or what may have motivated it.

Two members of Knoxville police, Sgt. Darrell Griffin and Officer Tyler Wylie responded to the scene and exchanged multiple shots with Johnson. The officers weren't hit.

People at the scene say they heard several shots and lots of running. Officers say they don't know yet how many shots were fired.

The manager of Master Cuts was called to the scene after the shooting and describes Nahl as a "very, very nice man." She went on to say "nothing but kindness came from him when you passed him" and he was always very jolly. She also says he brought his baby girl to work with him every day.

Some employees in the food court said they heard gunshots and pulled customers in to safety. 

Employees of some stores and salons closed their gates and took other security precautions. At other stores, employees were ushered outside and told to stay until further notice.

Officers from the Knoxville Police Department and the Knox County Sheriff's Office were on scene, as well as units from the Knoxville Fire Department.

Police say Sgt. Griffin has been with the department for 10 years and Officer Wylie has been with them for three years.

Both officers have been placed on administrative leave with pay, which is standard operating procedure in a shooting like this.

The area mall manager for Knoxville Center Mall issued a statement about the shooting Wednesday night.

"Any time an incident like this occurs within our community, we are deeply saddened. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victim and family members during this difficult time. We are grateful for the immediate response and actions of the Knoxville Police Department and our officers, which contained this tragic event."

Last November, there was also a shooting at Knoxville Center Mall in the locker room at the Rush Fitness Center. A man was shot in the stomach. The shooter believed the victim was stalking him.

Two other fatal shootings have put Knoxville in the national news spotlight in recent months.

In July, Jim D. Adkisson, 58, of Powell, is accused of opening fire in Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church, killing two people and injuring six during a Sunday morning service.

And in August, Jamar B. Siler, 15, is accused of the fatal shooting of Ryan McDonald, 15, at Central High School.

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