A 45-year-old man is in jail after being accused of trying to take pictures of a woman in a bathroom and pointing a weapon at a man in a Fort Worth shopping center on Christmas Eve, according to police.
A woman told police that she was inside a public bathroom at the Hulen Mall when she saw what looked like a cellphone facing her from underneath the stall wall. According to a Fort Worth Police Department press release issued on Monday, the victim left the stall and confronted the suspect, whom she described as a man dressed to look like a woman.
The woman followed the suspect, and a confrontation ensued, according to the press release. A man saw what was happening and tried to prevent the suspect from leaving the mall, which is located near Interstate 20 and Chisholm Trail Parkway. The suspect then allegedly pulled what looked like a handgun out of a backpack and pointed it at the man, according to the release.
Fort Worth police officers arrived at the mall around 4:30 p.m. after receiving reports about a man with a gun.
Police told the Star-Telegram around 5:15 p.m. Saturday that a woman said someone was trying to shoot her in the mall. At that time, officials said, they didn’t believe anyone had been shot and they hadn’t located the weapon.
The weapon was later found to be a pepper ball gun, police said Monday in the press release.
The mall was put on lockdown as a precaution.
Kisahawna Banks, an employee at the H&M clothing store in the mall, said she didn’t know what was going on when she heard screaming and saw people running, but she knew it wasn’t good.
She, her coworkers and her managers closed the gates to the store and ushered guests with them into the back of the store for shelter.
“It’s just crazy that something like this happens on Christmas Eve,” Banks said. “One hell of of a way to quit work.”
Vani Banks, another mall employee who works at Kids Footlocker, said she saw people pushing each other and running down escalators. Some were pushed to the floor.
“It really was chaos,” she said.
The suspect was arrested at a nearby apartment complex.
According to the police report, the suspect was identified as Douglas Brent Egan. He was booked into the Fort Worth jail Saturday shortly before 8 p.m. on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and improper photo/video.
Star-Telegram reporter James Hartley contributed to this report.
This story was originally published December 26, 2022 1:40 PM.