A 22-year-old man tried to commit suicide at the Great Mall in Milpitas, California. Image Credit: Pixabay

California: The shooting that emptied the Great Mall in Milpitas, California, on Saturday evening was a suicide attempt, according to police.

A 22-year-old man, initially thought to be a victim of a shooting at the mall, had turned a gun on himself, the Milpitas Police Department said in a news release.

The man, a San Francisco resident, suffered a non-life-threatening gunshot wound and was taken to the hospital by paramedics.

The sound of gunfire disrupted holiday shopping for mall customers and employees who either fled the scene or sheltered in place at the San Francisco Bay Area mall.

Police arrived at the mall at 5:16 p.m. after reports of a shooting outside Old Navy.

Stay put

They instructed people inside stores to stay put as they searched for possible suspects and victims. Other law enforcement agencies and fire departments assisted, and people were escorted to the parking lot as their locations were deemed safe.

At 9:26 p.m. — more than four hours after they arrived — police announced on Twitter that they had concluded their search and that everyone in the mall had been escorted out. They did not find any additional victims, they said.

During the evacuations, two people had unrelated medical emergencies and were taken to the hospital.

By Sunday morning, detectives from the Milpitas Police Department’s Special Investigations Unit had determined that the man’s gunshot wound was self-inflicted.