Investigators identify gunman, victims in Oregon mall shooting

Fearful shoppers hid in stores and behind racks as the man ran down a corridor and to a back hallway that led downstairs.

Jacob Tyler Roberts

Jacob Tyler Roberts (December 12, 2012)

Clackmas County, Ore.

The gunman, having shot three people at an Oregon mall, initially tried to flee.

Fearful shoppers hid in stores and behind racks as the man ran down a corridor and to a back hallway that led downstairs.

By then, he likely heard the sirens as dozens of police officers converged on the Clackamas Town Center in Happy Valley.

The gunman, dressed in a load-bearing vest and a mask, then decided to take his own life.

Details of Tuesday's deadly mall shooting began to emerge, but the biggest question -- Why? -- remained unanswered.

At a news conference on Wednesday, investigators identified a 22-year-old man as the lone suspect responsible for shooting three people -- two of them fatally -- at the mall in suburban Portland.

Sheriff's investigators said they believe Jacob Tyler Roberts acted alone in what they described as a "heinous, horrible, tragic crime."

But for those looking for a motive, all investigators shared for now was that there was no apparent connection between the shooter and his victims.

The man and woman who were fatally shot were Cindy Ann Yuille, 54, and Steven Mathew Forsyth, 45.

The gunman hastily moved through the Macy's at the mall and toward the food court, located on the second floor, where he opened fire, the sheriff's office said.

Police arrived within one minute of the first calls of a shooting, a speedy response that may have influenced the gunman's course of action, Sheriff Craig Roberts said.

The gunman was wearing a load-bearing vest -- a military-style vest that makes it easier to carry heavy equipment, which many witnesses confused with a bulletproof vest -- and was armed with a semi-automatic rifle.

The rifle jammed at one point, but started working again, the sheriff said.

The injured woman was identified as Kristina Shevchenko by officials at the Oregon Health and Science University Hospital. She remains in serious condition, the hospital said.

The families of the other victims, Yuille and Forsyth, provided brief comments through authorities, but asked for privacy as they mourn their loved ones.

Yuille was remembered as "everybody's friend" who put others first.

Forsyth was the father of two children with a great sense of humor and a zest for life, his family said.

Mall patrons were paralyzed during the shooting, as shoppers had no clue where the gunman would fire next.

Entire swaths of Clackamas Town Center turned silent. The only sounds were the blasts from the man's rifle and the ensuing screams. Even the mall's Santa dropped to the ground.

CHICAGO

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