Two Men Charged For Firing Guns at Each Other in Front of Pretzel Stand at Packed Mall

Two men have been charged in connection to last week's shooting at a suburban Chicago shopping mall that wounded four civilians and forced thousands to run for cover. The two men, 32-year-old Tyran Williams and 29-year-old Steve Lane, face several felony charges that include aggravated discharge of a firearm.

The December 23 shootout took place at Oakbrook Center, which is located in west suburban Oak Brook. The two men began firing at each other close to an Auntie Anne's pretzel store amid an argument started between Williams and a male companion of Lane's, DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin said at a news conference.

"The facts allege in this case that on one of the busiest shopping days of the year, at the second largest shopping mall in the Chicago area, that these two defendants decided to settle a verbal argument by taking out handguns and firing multiple times with thousands of men, women children and families present," Berlin said.

Williams was struck four times by the gunfire and had to receive surgery. Three women and a man who were nearby at the time were also wounded.

"This is just a very unfortunate incident that is completely out of character for our area," Oak Brook police Chief James Kruger said.

Alex Gay, 23, was inside the mall at the time of the shooting. She said that she didn't hear any gunshots, but was almost trampled when people began fleeing.

"I'm shook up," Gay said the day after the shooting. "It was scary. Everyone was sprinting out of the mall as sirens went over [the] intercom saying, 'Emergency. Evacuate. Seek shelter.'"

Authorities said that Lane and his companion, who police have not named, fled after the shootout. Roughly 100 police officers, including SWAT teams, conducted a search of the mall after the incident.

Chicago Men Arrested
Two men have been charged in connection to last week’s shooting at a suburban Chicago shopping mall that wounded four civilians and forced thousands to run for cover. The December 23, 2021, shootout took place at Oakbrook Center, which is located in west suburban Oak Brook. Ina Fassbender/AFP via Getty Images

A judge issued a $1 million bail Wednesday for both men during a court appearance.

Berlin said a total of 12 shots were fired in the gun battle, and mall security estimates that between 15,000 and 20,000 people were in the mall at the time.

Berlin said there is no evidence Lane's companion was one of the gunmen. He said prosecutors have spoken to that man's attorney and expect to speak with him soon.

Investigators recovered both guns used in the shooting and found DNA matched to Lane and Williams on those weapons, he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Mall Shootout
Two men began firing at each other close to an Auntie Anne’s pretzel store in a suburban Chicago mall last week, DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said at a news conference. Tyran Williams and Steve Lane face several felony charges that include aggravated discharge of a firearm. Christopher Furlong/Getty Images