Wednesday, November 30, 2022

California shop owner fires burglars, kills girl waiting for Easter Bunny in mall

Victorville, Calif. ( Associated Press) – A Southern California shoe store owner opened fire on two shoppers, police said, but accidentally shot a 9-year-old girl for taking a picture of her with a mall Easter Bunny. Officials said Wednesday that the store owner fled the state and was arrested in Nevada.

Victorville Police said in a statement, 20-year-old Markel Cockerell was chasing shoppers out of a store at the Mall of Victor Valley in the small town of Victorville on Tuesday evening when she “fired several shots at shoppers.”

“The cockerel’s shots missed the shoppers and instead struck the 9-year-old female victim,” the statement said.

A bullet broke a bone.

“And it’s the kind of fracture they can’t repair surgically. He’s going to have to wear a special brace for that, and it’s going to take a lot longer to heal,” she told Fox 11 TV in Los Angeles. .

“It will take some time for the bone to heal and then we will see the extent of the nerve damage, but she is a soldier. She is a really tough little kid,” Moraga-Saldarelli told KNBC-TV.

This Clark County Detention Center Booking Photo, Provided By The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Shows Markel Cockerell Of Adelanto, Calif., Following Her Arrest By The Nevada Highway Patrol Late Tuesday, April 12, 2022.
This Clark County Detention Center booking photo, provided by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, shows Markel Cockerell of Adelanto, Calif., following her arrest by the Nevada Highway Patrol late Tuesday, April 12, 2022.

Associated Press. Via Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department

He was airlifted to the hospital in a stable condition, officials said. The mall’s stores were closed and customers took shelter inside as deputy searched for the shooter.

Victorville Police said Cockerell, a co-owner of shoe store Soul Addicts, was arrested in Clark County by the Nevada Highway Patrol at around 9 p.m. in his car.

Victorville Police said he was being held Wednesday at the Clark County Detention Center “on an extraditionable warrant, for lack of $1 million bail for attempted murder.” An extradition hearing was scheduled for Thursday and prison and court records did not indicate whether Cockrell had an attorney representing him who could comment on his behalf.

“I’m glad they caught him and he’ll definitely pay for it. I really hope they throw the book at him,” Moraga-Saldarelli told KNBC-TV.

The mall was closed on Tuesday following the shooting and reopened on Wednesday.

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