Photo of Columbia Mall shooting suspect Darion Marcus AguilarSaturday morning The Mall in Columbia, nestled  between Baltimore and Washington, D.C., was the scene of a mass shooting.

Police say that Darion Marcus Aguilar, a 19-year-old from College Park, Md., took a taxi from College Park to Columbia, and killed two employees of the skater apparel store, Zumiez, before killing himself. In the midst of the mayhem, 5 other people were injured. One from getting shot in the foot by a ricocheted bullet, the others sustained injuries from fleeing the mall.

Aguilar, 19, shot 25-year-old Tyler Johnson and 21-year-old Brianna Benlolo with a 12-gauge shotgun on the upper level of Columbia Mall, reports the Associated Press. Benlolo was a mother to a two-year-old child, and was from College Park, the same city as Aguilar.

Authorities still have no motive as to why Aguilar shot the two victims.

“I know there’s a lot of interest in the motive for this, and I have as much interest in that as anybody,” Howard County Police Chief Bill McMahon told reporters Sunday.

He said there was still no known relationship between the shooter and his victims, though he did not rule out the possibility that there was one.  Aguilar purchased the 12-gauge shotgun, made by Mossberg, in December, the chief said.

McMahon also added that police served a search and seizure warrant at the shooter’s house and retrieved documents, computers and other potential evidence, including a journal. McMahon stated that the journal expressed “some general unhappiness with his life, but I really don’t have any other information about that now”.

As a long-time Columbia resident, I received about 10 texts, Facebook posts, and tweets asking me where I was that morning.  I couldn’t understand why until a friend told me to turn on the news. That morning, I told a friend that I planned on taking some items back to Nordstrom and I promised my son we would head to the food court for Chipotle. At around 10:30 a.m, we got into the car and headed to the mall which is less than 2 blocks away. Then I changed my mind, and headed to my sister’s house. By the time I reached her house, that’s when my phone started to get inundated with calls and texts.

As of today, The Mall in Columbia is still closed.  There are reports that it will open later on at 1 p.m, but I can definitely say, it’ll never be the same. Ironically our town’s motto is “Choose Civility”.



Like Us On Facebook Follow Us On Twitter
  • He probably was dealing with some sort of mental illness that he never got help for. It seem like shooting are happening all over the United States. Before it one maybe once a year but now it seem like it’s one every month. I don’t know what’s going on.

  • velociraptor

    Is it really a “mass” shooting if there were only two casualties, not including the aggressor? Or is this only the case because it occurred in a shopping mall and not on the corner in a neighborhood?

  • Autumn

    I live around the corner from the mall and it’s truly alarming. My friend was in the food court when it happened. Our America is becoming a scary place.

  • Brendan aka Mr. Morehouse/Yale Grad

    Racism made him do it. Its da white mane fault read the sarcasm .

    Yet black folks say we have no mental issues in the community. We have psychopathic thugs walking around daily. I proudly put 2 of my ex friends behind bars. I don’t mind seeing young brothas going to jail. I don’t take part in celebrating the hood culture and the foolishness ie having kids out of wedlock, being a thug, etc etc.
    Yet the President wasn’t black enough because he didn’t grow up like Goodtimes. Many black folk have poor sight. The Cosby show wasn’t real according to many. I grew up like the Cosbys. I’m an 80’s child my generation sickens me. This is why I’m trying to mentor and give back. I know some of these young men are savable. I’m teaching them to cook, computer code and I’m also teaching them robotics. I also finished culinary school in December. Culinary is the passion. Systems software Engineer and Electrical Engineer pays the bills.

    • ScriptTease

      You keep doing what you doing, and hopefully one day enough of us will wake up.

    • Hey Now

      We don’t know why he decided to commit this act and there was no mention that it was racially motivated. And College Park isn’t really all that “hood” so it’s not really fair to assume that that was his background.

  • Thoreen

    @Hey Now
    College Park is surrounded by many hoods in PG county. There are many bad neighborhoods in the college park city. It’s no different from the rest.