Gunman fires shots outside California mall, no one hit

LOS ANGELES Sun Dec 16, 2012 1:11am EST

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A gunman caused panic at a southern California mall on Saturday when he fired at least 50 shots in a parking lot outside a department store, but hit no one and was taken into custody, police said.

The incident at the Fashion Island mall in Newport Beach - which came a day after a man killed 27 people and then himself in a shooting rampage in Connecticut - caused shoppers to flee into store dressing rooms, according to local broadcast reports.

"A male was shooting a weapon in the air and at the ground, standing by a vehicle," Newport Beach police spokeswoman Kathy Lowe said.

Police said they had taken the man, 42, into custody. They did not immediately release his name or say what charges he might face for the incident.

No one was wounded, but one person sustained minor injuries fleeing the area on foot, police said.

The incident in Newport Beach, which is 35 miles south of Los Angeles, also came four days after a shooter at an Oregon mall killed two people and himself.

(Reporting By Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by David Bailey and Paul Simao)

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