Omaha Mall Shooting Victim Found Self Bleeding Before Realizing the Loud Sounds Were Gunshots

Jeff Schaffart didn't realize right away that the bangs he heard at Westroads Mall were gunshots.

Then he saw the blood streaming down his left arm and felt a stinging pain there.

"I could hear my wife, Carrie, yell, 'Get down! Get down!"' he said, "but I didn't."

Schaffart, 34, an Omaha attorney, and wife Carrie were on the third floor of the Von Maur department store Wednesday when a man began shooting, forcing holiday shoppers to flee and barricade themselves in dressing rooms.

Witnesses said the gunman fired on shoppers from a third-floor balcony of the store.

A bullet went in and out of Schaffart's upper arm, and another shot grazed the pinkie finger on his left hand. He used his necktie as a tourniquet for his arm wound and put napkins on his finger to stop the bleeding.

At a news conference at Nebraska Medical Center, he said he didn't see the shooter or see anyone else get shot. He said he may have been hit from behind.

Hospital spokeswoman Maggie O'Brien said three injured people were taken to the hospital, including a 61-year-old man with a bullet wound to his chest. He was in surgery for about six hours and in critical condition Wednesday night.

Creighton University Medical Center spokeswoman Lisa Stites said one victim was dead upon arrival there, another died sometime after arriving, and a third, a woman, suffered critical injuries.

"I feel exceedingly lucky and fortunate to have made it through today," said Schaffart, who along with his wife was looking for a dress for their 2-year-old daughter's visit to Santa.

"My heart goes out to those that didn't, and the families of those that weren't so lucky."