‘I Felt The Presence Of God’: Shooting Survivors Praise Armed Citizen Who Stopped Mall Shooting


Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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Survivors of the Greenwood Park Mall shooting in Indiana praised Elisjsha Dicken on Tuesday for fatally shooting the alleged gunman who killed three people.

Dicken, 22, shot the suspected gunman, 20-year-old Jonathan Douglas Sapirman, who killed three people and injured two others after opening fire with a Sig Sauer Model 400 M 556-caliber rifle in the late afternoon Sunday, the Greenwood Police Department said. Dicken reportedly fired at the suspected gunman with his 9-millimeter handgun within 15 seconds of the shooting.

“I find him to be an absolute hero,” one witness of the shooting told WTHR 13 on Tuesday.

“He was a Godsend, I swear I felt the presence of God in Eli that day,” an anonymous woman said. “We would not be alive if it weren’t for Eli. I cannot believe there was an armed citizen there.”

Dicken entered the mall with his girlfriend carrying his firearm under Indiana’s new “Constitutional Carry” law, which no longer requires a citizen to obtain a permit in order to conceal carry a handgun, WTHR 13 reported.

Sapirman entered the mall at 4:54 p.m. and entered the bathroom located beside the food court, the Greenwood Police Department said Monday. He remained in the bathroom for an hour and two minutes, then opened fire on a crowd at 5:56 p.m., according to the Greenwood mayor’s office. Dicken killed the suspected gunman at 5:57 p.m. (RELATED: ‘Real Hero Of The Day’: Citizen Shoots, Kills Gunman Rampaging Through Indiana Mall) 

“The Good Samaritan was armed with a pistol and engaged the shooter as he stood outside the restroom area firing into the food court,” Greenwood Police Chief Jim Ison said Monday. “The shooter fired several rounds, striking the suspect. The suspect attempted to retreat back into the restroom and fell to the ground after being shot.”

An autopsy report released Tuesday concluded that Sapirman died from eight gunshot wounds, according to CBS News.

Police identified the victims as a married couple, 56-year-old Pedro Pineda and 37-year-old Rosa Mirian Rivera de Pineda, and 30-year-old Victor Gomez. A 22-year-old woman suffered a gunshot wound to the leg and a 12-year-old girl was injured in the back, police said.