On Saturday morning three were left dead from a shooting in a Maryland mall. The incident created a tremendous amount of panic throughout the small suburban community. They noted that a total of nine shots were fired and could be heard from outside the mall.
The event took place inside the well-known skate shop, Zumiez. Since the incident Zumiez has announced that they “plan to make counseling available for store employees in the area”. They also made note to the community Saturday evening how “deeply saddened” the company is for the violence that took place at the store. From a PR standpoint I think that the company responded to the situation professionally. I think that many customers and family members can appreciate their efforts and sympathy for both their employees as well as the community.
The police officers also responded very professionally; making announcements and updating the public within an hour of the shooting. You can tell that they had been trained in case of an emergency, handling and communicating with both the media and community in a safe and timely manner. They stated that the believed gunman was found dead at the scene of the crime; however his motive is still under investigation. The department posted on Twitter an hour after the shooting announcing that “the episode appeared to over and that no additional shots had been heard”. They continued to post twitter updates throughout the afternoon. Communicating and responding to the incident in a timely manner shows how professional their department is. I also think that it gains trust within their community; knowing how prepared they were and how calmly they handled the situation.
To read more about the shooting view the article on The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/26/us/3-reported-dead-in-maryland-mall-shooting.html?ref=us&_r=0