Officials: Brawls at malls across the US do not appear to be connected

Law enforcement officials say that a series of fights at malls across the United States on Dec. 26 do not appear to be connected.



The fights took place at malls in eight states, including the Jersey Gardens Mall in Elizabeth.



Mass panic ensued inside the Elizabeth mall after a fight broke out and people thought they heard gunshots. Officials say the loud noise was a chair falling to the ground.



Elizabeth Mayor Chris Bollwage says that no shots were fired inside the mall.



"Someone in the food court yelled 'gun, shots fired' and pandemonium happened," Bollwage says. "Yelling 'gun' in a crowded mall on the day after Christmas can only create pandemonium and chaos."



Several people suffered minor injuries during the evacuation. Elizabeth police say that no arrests have been made.



Other incidents happened in malls in Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, North Carolina, Ohio and Tennessee.



Although officials say the incidents are not connected, there have been some reports that the fights were loosely organized on social media.


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