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11/21/05-Tacoma, WA

Mall Shooting: Suspect's Ex-Girlfriend Gets Text Messages

A man accused of wounding six people in a shooting rampage at a Tacoma mall warned in cell-phone text messages that "the world" was going to feel "my anger" and "my pain," his ex-girlfriend said Monday.

Minutes before the shootings began, Dominick Maldonado sent a series of text messages to Tiffany Robison, she said.

One, which she showed the media on her phone, reads, "Today is the day that the world will know my anger. Today the world will feel my pain. Today is the day I will be heard!"

The message shows it was sent at 11:58 a.m. -- 17 minutes before authorities say the shootings began at Tacoma Mall.

The couple broke up about six months ago, Robison said. But Sunday morning, she received a phone call from Maldonado, "saying he was either going to a good place where good people go or a bad place where bad people go," she said.

The Seattle Times reported that Maldonado also sent a text message to his best friend saying the world would "feel my anger" -- after he allegedly had shot six people and was holding hostages in a music store at the mall.

Tacoma police spokesman Mark Fulghum said Maldonado was taken into custody after negotiations that resulted in the hostages being released unharmed.

Maldonado, 20, has been booked on assault and kidnapping charges at the Pierce County Jail. He is being held on $450,000 bail on six counts of felony assault and three counts of felony kidnapping.

Jon Lendosky, Tacoma's deputy fire chief, said five of the six people wounded in the shooting had minor injuries.

One patient arrived at Tacoma General Hospital in critical condition. Hospital supervisor Holly Smith said the male patient remained in critical condition early Monday. He had multiple gunshot wounds and had undergone surgery, she said.

The patient was not conscious and was on a ventilator, Smith said.

Inside the mall Sunday, Stacy Wilson, 29, heard a popping noise and turned around, the AP reported. "I saw the gunman randomly shooting. I ran with a group of women to Victoria's Secret," Wilson told the AP. She told the AP they crouched behind a wall in the store, and when the shooting stopped, an employee ran out and closed a security gate at the front.

Wilson said she heard 15 to 20 shots, according to the AP.

"He was walking backward and shooting. I couldn't see his face," she told the AP. "Everyone was running and screaming."

The Seattle Times also reported that Maldonado has a juvenile criminal history dating to 1998, including convictions on charges of burglary, theft and trafficking in stolen property, and court records show a judge had ordered him not to possess weapons. The newspaper also said court files show Maldonado had struggled with drugs for years.

Maldonado has not made a public statement.

Robison said that when she received his text messages she responded, asking what he was going to do, but he didn't answer. She said she thought "he's going to do something stupid."

When a friend called Robison to tell her about the shooting at the mall, Robison said, she suspected Maldonado. Shortly afterward, she said, he called her and told her he had shot people and was holding people hostage in a Sam Goody music store.

"He said, like, 'I'm crazy, I'm crazy. I can't do this. I'm crazy. I got to let you go. I'm on the other line with the police,' and that was the end of that," she said.

Robison said she "had never heard" of him having a weapon.

 

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