Man dead after shooting at Opry Mills Mall in Nashville

(Nashville Fire Department)


Metro Police said the man killed in a shooting at Opry Mills and the person suspected of shooting him have histories with the department.

A 22-year-old man from Nashville, identified as Demarco Churchwell, was shot during a dispute inside the mall on Thursday afternoon at 2:33 p.m. Police say Churchwell has died.

The shooting happened in a hallway near Auntie Anne's, near Old Navy and Forever 21. At least two shots were fired. The initial call to police came in as an active shooter situation, but police say that was not the case.

The gunman, 22-year-old Justin Golson, shot the victim after an ongoing dispute. Police identified the gun as a pistol.

Golson fled after the shooting to a nearby ticket booth across the street from the mall. Metro Police said a retired California officer was inside that ticket booth and was able to get the suspect's gun. That retired officer detained the gunman until police arrived.

At least 25 people witnessed the shooting.

The shooting prompted an evacuation at the mall and several schools to go out lockout.

The mall is closed for the rest of the night.

"Opry Mills Management would like to take a moment to thank the swift and courageous response of the Nashville Police Department with respect to a situation that took place earlier today on our property. We are cooperating fully with investigators and offering any assistance we can. We would direct any additional questions regarding today’s incident to law enforcement." - Opry Mills Mall


UPDATE: Metro Police said a man is dead after a shooting at Opry Mills Mall.

The shooting suspect is in custody. Police say he surrendered immediately.

Police said the shooting stemmed from a dispute. Police said there was never an active shooter at the mall, but two to three people were involved in a dispute and gunfire rang out because of that.


Metro Communications said a man was shot at Opry Mills Mall on Thursday afternoon after an ongoing dispute with another man.

Metro Nashville Police said the man was shot inside Opry Mills. He was flown to Skyline Medical Center in critical condition.

Police said one suspect is in custody and said no other shooting victims have been reported. The suspected gunman left the mall and immediately surrendered, according to police.

Communications said the shooting happened inside Forever 21 just before 2:30 p.m. 911 calls go through the terrifying moments:

"My heart breaks for the victim. I'll never forget this day, the fear on people's faces, and the bravery demonstrated by the police force that rushed in," Justin Bonnema said on Twitter.

Units are also responding to the Old Navy outlet inside the mall. The entire mall is being evacuated and swept by police as a precaution. The ATF is also on scene.

Several schools were on lockout, but have since been released to dismiss students. They are:

  • Two River’s M.S.
  • Pennington E.S.
  • McGavock E.S.
  • Stanford Montessori
  • Litton Middle School

Tennessee Highway Patrol was in the Bass Pro Shop parking lot performing motorcycle training. Troopers immediately responded to assist the Nashville Police Department.

FOX 17 News has a crew headed to the scene and will be providing updates.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off