NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Metro police were called to Opry Malls Saturday night after a few altercations erupted in the mall’s food court.
Police told News 2 it began between three juveniles but the situation was stopped by mall security prior to their arrival.
At least one person was punched but fled before officers could speak with them. Two teens accused of the alleged assault were taken into custody for unrelated outstanding warrants.
On Sunday, Opry Mills General Manager Jad Murphy released the following statement:
“There were three minor altercations involving a few teens with many onlookers, but they were halted quickly by our security team with no reported injuries. We have zero tolerance for this unacceptable behavior as we strive to provide the best possible shopping experience for all.”
The situation, however, turned a casual shopping trip into a chaotic one for Baretta Bowling, an expecting mother, and her three children.
“When we headed into the food court and it was so congested that we couldn’t get through,” she explained to News 2. “That’s when we noticed there was people screaming, gathering all together.”
The Shelbyville mother was with her 7-year-old daughter and two sons, ages 10 and 15.
“I got real scared and grabbed the two smaller children by the hand,” Bowling recalled. “I even actually told them if people started shooting to lay down and get behind a certain square pole.”
Her two sons witnessed a man get punched multiple times.
“They wrestled around a little bit and then one guy got on top of the other guy and just started pounding him in the face and once he beat them up enough, he jumped up and took off,” the 15-year-old explained.
The family was able to make it around the crowd and out of the mall safely. No one was seriously injured in the incident.
“It was a shock that we went through that in a mall,” Bowling added. “That’s supposed to be a safe place.”
No further details about the situation have been released. It wasn’t immediately what caused the altercations.