Records show suspected mall gunman previously arrested 18 times before deadly shooting

OCALA, Fla. — Paddock Mall in Ocala opened its doors to shoppers Tuesday morning, three days after the deadly shooting.

Tuesday night, Ocala Police were seen patrolling the parking lots, but shoppers said the same level of security wasn’t seen inside the mall.


“People are still afraid. Like I am one of them,” said Hamelie Desty, Ocala resident.

Early Tuesday, Ocala Police doubled a reward for information leading to the arrest of Albert Shell. The suspected gunman they believed killed a man inside the mall Saturday and shot a woman in the leg.

Police said Shell is wanted on charges of premeditated first-degree murder and attempted premeditated first-degree murder.

They are also looking for a man they say took the gunman’s hat after the shooting. He is wanted for tampering with evidence they said has crucial DNA evidence in the case.

Research showed Shell has a long list of violent criminal offenses such as domestic battery by strangulation, tampering with or harassing a witness, and other charges dating back to 2003.

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Shell was arrested 18 times, his latest arrest stemmed from domestic battery by strangulation and harassing a witness or victim from communicating with law enforcement.

Desty said she hopes mall officials work with the city to add more security inside the mall and add more cameras to deter violence.

“I believe they should have more like more police around because it happened recently a few months ago, and it happens again. I don’t know how safe it is right now,” said Desty.

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A spokesperson for Washington Prime Group Holdings L.P sent Eyewitness News a statement:

“We are deeply saddened by this tragedy. Our thoughts are with all those involved. The safety of our guests, retailers and employees is our top priority. We are working closely with the Ocala Police Department as they investigate this incident. For more information, please contact the Ocala Police Department directly at (352) 369-7000.”

-A spokesperson for WPG, the owner of Paddock Mall

Anyone with information leading to the arrest of Shell should call the Ocala Police Department at 352-656-6137.

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