KISSIMMEE, Fla. – Two people were wounded in a shooting at a central Florida mall Tuesday, and police were trying to determine if two men found dead a short time later in a crashed vehicle were connected, authorities said.
Officers responded to shots being fired near the Osceola Square Mall's Ross Dress For Less store around 6:15 p.m., Kissimmee police said in a news release. The injuries of the two victims, who weren't immediately named, didn't appear to be life-threatening, police said.
The shooting followed a verbal fight in the store and spilled outside, police spokeswoman Stacie Miller said. The victims, who didn't have weapons, were at another mall entrance when they were shot. Miller said it wasn't clear if the shooting suspects were in the mall or out in the parking lot.
As officers were heading to the store, they saw a vehicle matching a description of the suspects' vehicle heading toward them. The officers turned around to follow and eventually found that it had crashed head-on into another car.
The two men in the suspect vehicle were dead from what appeared to be crash-related injuries, Miller said. The driver of the other vehicle was injured, but Miller said it didn't appear to be life-threatening.
It wasn't immediately clear if the two men in the crashed car were the shooting suspects.
"That's the puzzle," Miller said.
The Florida Highway Patrol will take over the crash investigation and identify the dead men, Miller said. After that, police will conduct a photo lineup with the shooting victims to determine if they were the suspects.
Despite the commotion earlier Tuesday evening, the mall and the Ross store were open to customers later that night as police continued to process a cordoned off area.