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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Stuti Mishra and Rachel Sharp

What we know about victims of Texas outlet mall shooting


A three-year-old boy, two elementary-age sisters, a young engineer from India and mall workers are among the eight people killed in last weekend’s horror mass shooting in Allen, Texas.

The shooting unfolded at around 3.30pm local time at the crowded Dallas-area Allen Premium Outlets mall on Saturday as families and friends enjoyed their weekends.

Mauricio Garcia, a 33-year-old former security guard believed to have harboured neo-Nazi and white supremacist beliefs, drove to the mall armed with an AR-15-style rifle and opened fire on innocent shoppers and workers.

He was killed by a law enforcement officer who was on the scene and rushed to subdue the gunman.

Eight people were killed and seven others injured.

Police have not released a possible motive behind the shooting, but the gunman was wearing a patch reading “RWDS” – that stands for “Right Wing Death Squad” – as he carried out the rampage.

Police sources told NBC News that Garcia – an army veteran who worked as a security guard – had also posted neo-Nazi and white supremacist content online.

While details are yet to emerge about the gunman and what led up to the horror attack, the identities of those killed are coming to light.

Here’s what we know so far about the victims:

Christian LaCour

Christian LaCour, a security guard who worked at the mall, was identified as one of the people killed in the gunfire by his family.

LaCour was 20 years old and had grown up in nearby Farmersville area.

He was working as a security guard at the mall when he was shot and killed on Saturday.

Christian LaCour was killed in the shooting in Allen, Texas (Facebook)

LaCour’s grandmother had posted on social media on Saturday, saying his family was unable to locate him.

She then later paid tribute to him in another post.

“He was such a beautiful soul,” she wrote. “I was so proud of him and so glad I got to see him 2 weeks ago.”

LaCour’s family said they are still processing his passing and that it has broken their hearts that they have had to spread this news to others.

Aishwarya Thatikonda

Aishwarya Thatikonda, a 26-year-old engineer who moved to the US from India, was also identified by family members as one of the victims.

Thatikonda was shopping with a friend at the mall when she was shot and killed by the gunman, a family representative told WFAA.

Aishwarya Thatikonda died in the Allen mall shooting (Family photo)

Her friend was also shot and injured in the shooting and is currently in a stable condition in hospital.

Thatikonda’s family is planning to fly her body to India, where she has family.

Kyu Song Cho, Cindy Cho and James Cho

Three-year-old James Cho was among the eight killed in the shooting, along with his parents Kyu Song Cho, 37 and Cindy Cho, 35, according to officials.

His six-year-old brother was also present at the mall and suffered injuries, but survived and was released from the ICU. He is the only surviving member of the family.

Parents Cindy and Kyu Cho were killed along with their three-year-old son James in the Texas mall shooting (GoFundMe)

According to a GoFundMe page set up by friends and relatives, the Cho family had gone to Allen Premium Outlets mall on Saturday to exchange clothes that their six-year-old son had received as a birthday present a few days earlier.

Friends of the family, who set up the page, wrote that the afternoon, which was supposed to be “filled with light, love and celebration unfortunately was cut short by another mass shooting massacre”.

The Cho family was identified by the Texas Department of Public Safety.

The Dallas Morning News newspaper cited Korean consulate officials confirming that the Cho family were American citizens of Korean descent and that diplomats are in contact with their family members.

Daniela and Sofia Mendoza

Sisters Daniela, 11, and Sofia Mendoza, 8, were among those killed in the horror attack while they were shopping at the outlet mall with their mother.

Wylie Independent School District paid tribute to the two elementary school students at Cox Elementary School, who were in grades four and two respectively.

They were remembered by their school principal Krista Wilson as “the kindest, most thoughtful students with smiles that could light up any room” in a letter to parents.

In a GoFundMe launched to help the family, organiser Anabel Del Angel revealed that their mother survived the attack but is still in hospital.

Sisters Daniela, 11, and Sofia Mendoza, 8, were among those killed at the Allen mall massacre (GoFundMe)

“With a heavy heart, we share that our beautiful Daniela and Sofia have passed away. They were tragically taken from us by a senseless act on May 6th, 2023. Their mom is currently still hospitalized. We want to thank everyone that has been reaching out and offering their support and assistance. Please pray for our now broken family,” it read.

“The girls have left a void that nothing in the world could ever fill. Please pray for their mom, my sister, and her broken heart. Please also pray for their dad, that despite all the trauma he has had to endure, is still unbelievably strong. They will be forever missed and loved.”

Elio Cumana-Rivas

Elio Cumana-Rivas, 32, was the eighth victim identified by the Texas Department of Public Safety on Monday evening.

No further details about him have been released yet.

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