On July 17, a mass shooting occurred at the Greenwood Park Mall. It lasted only a minute, but three people were killed and two others were injured before the shooter was fatally shot by a legally armed civilian bystander. WFYI’s Taylor Bennett sat down with Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers to reflect on that day and discuss how the community is coping.
Taylor Bennett: You have a law enforcement background? How do you feel how everything on unfolded there with the law enforcement in the investigation following?
Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers: Well, I've got to say I'm incredibly proud of not only my men and women in the police and fire and EMS side, but also in Central Indiana. You know, we have trained for this in the past, we've had multi-jurisdictional training at the Greenwood Park Mall, and everything came together exactly as we had trained for it.
So I'm so thankful that they've spent the time on multiple occasions with all these different agencies training, the training paid off. The people went in, they took control of the situation, and they handled it professionally and in just an amazing manner.
Bennett: You know, there was some some criticism about the young man who was hailed as the Good Samaritan and what he did. What do you think about that, as far as gun control, anti-guns, that sort of discussions that floated around when that happened?
Myers: You know, there's there there's always going to be speculation of people who don't agree with somebody carrying a gun. They don't agree with the Second Amendment. You know, with my background in law enforcement, I have concerns over the law that was passed. However, I do believe in the Second Amendment. I do believe people have the right to bear arms. And I'm incredibly proud of this young man that was there at that time and took action and saved countless lives.
Bennett: What is going on with the community in the aftermath of the shooting? I know the community did come together afterwards with fundraisers and GoFundMe accounts and those sorts of things. How's everything going, as far as that is concerned?
Myers: Yeah. For me, it's really enlightening to see the community came together as they have to support the police to support fire to support everybody there. I was able to go up to the fundraiser for the Pinata family, talk to some people there and just reassure them that you know, Greenwood is still a warm, welcoming community.
We want people to know that we're a safe place. Greenwood Park Mall is a safe mall. Yes, we had one bad incident. But we don't want that to put a black eye on the city. And you know, as the residents, I can't tell you the outpouring of love and affection that we have felt throughout the city. And honestly, throughout the entire nation. I get text messages, emails, phone calls from people all over the United States, just wanting to share their their praise for what happened and their condolences and wanting me to relay messages to all of those public safety officials of how proud everybody is of them.
Bennett: There was some mental health counseling that was made available for those impacted. Is that still available?
Myers: Yes, absolutely. The police department. They've had one major debriefing two days afterwards with mental counselors there. They've had a second one already. And our officers know that we have different forms of counseling available for them for not only this, but for the multiple things they see on a daily basis.
Bennett: Greenwood Mayor Mark Meyers, thank you for taking time to talk to us.
Myers: Thank you for having me.