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Augusta Mall Shooter May Have Been Seeking Revenge for 2022 Shooting

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A local man has been captured for the July 4 shooting inside Augusta Mall, and he may have been seeking revenge for a previous shooting.

Derek Lamont Blue, 24, was arrested late Wednesday and charged with aggravated assault and weapon possession in the mall shooting that injured a victim inside the Snipes shoe store. Chaos erupted in the mall when the gunfire sent shoppers and employees scrambling for safety.

According to a sheriff’s report released Wednesday, victim Rico Walton suffered two gunshot wounds to his leg. The 25-year-old victim was laying behind the counter inside Snipes on the lower level between Dicks Sporting Goods and JC Penny.

“One bullet struck his left upper thigh and a second bullet struck his right knee area,” a report says.

The mall shooting may have been revenge from a 2022 case, which lists Blue as the victim and Walton as the suspect. In that February 2022 case on Winston Way, Blue was struck in the elbow. Charges against Walton of aggravated assault x2 and weapon possession remain unresolved in court.

In the mall shooting, Walton identified Blue as the shooter before he left the mall for the hospital.

Witnesses inside Snipes told deputies that they were attempting to check Walton out for a purchase, when they observed Blue stand behind Walton. They stated that Walton turned to Blue and stated “Why are you following me?”

Blue responded, “I’m not following you, I’m shopping.” The witnesses stated that Walton turned back to Blue and stated, “I bet you if I hit you with that switch, you won’t be following me anymore.”

Blue then pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it at Walton and fired two rounds and fled the scene down a hallway between Snipes and Dicks Sporting Goods.

Blue has a previous arrest for simple battery and criminal trespass from 2022 that has been unresolved in court.

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Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh is an award-winning crime reporter in the Augusta-Aiken area with experience writing for The Augusta Chronicle, The Augusta Press and serving as publisher of The Jail Report. Rickabaugh is a 1994 graduate of the University of South Carolina and has appeared on several crime documentaries on the Investigation Discovery channel.
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