Lawsuit filed against Concord Mills over death of 13-year-old caught in crossfire

Updated: May. 5, 2021 at 12:09 PM EDT
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CONCORD, N.C. (WBTV) - The mother of a 13-year-old girl who was shot and killed outside Concord Mills Mall has filed a lawsuit against the mall, its owners and the teens accused in the shooting.

The shooting happened on Dec. 28, 2019, outside the Dave & Buster’s at the mall.

Aveanna Propst was walking with family members to their car after buying new sneakers when two teens, an 18 and 15-year-old, allegedly began firing at another group of teens they had an altercation with earlier inside the mall.

Aveanna, along with two other innocent bystanders, was struck in the crossfire.

According to the newly-filed lawsuit, she was holding hands with her older sister when she was shot. Her mother and two younger siblings were there as well.

Aveanna was pronounced dead at the scene.

The lawsuit, filed May 4 on behalf of the mother of Aveanna Propst, Daniale Mackin, alleges that the owners and operators of Concord Mills, Dave & Buster’s and their respective security staff failed to heed warning signs about escalating violence at the mall.

The lawsuit was filed against Simon Property Group, Mall at Concord Mills Limited Partnership, Dave & Buster’s Entertainment, Tango of North Carolina, C&D Enterprises, Allies Universal Security Services and the two teens accused in the shooting.

DOCUMENT: Click here to read the entire lawsuit

At least 20 previous instances of violence dating back to 2015, including fights, shootings, unaccompanied minors and general safety concerns are detailed throughout the lawsuit. It states that the public and the Concord Police Department had warned mall officials that something needed to be done about the security issues.

The lawsuit states that had mall ownership taken the necessary steps to address the safety issues, Aveanna’s death could have been avoided.

The lawsuit claims the defendants “were negligent in failing to maintain, inspect, secure, patrol, and manage the premises, thereby creating an unreasonable risk of injury to lawful visitors,” including Aveanna.

“We only have memories with her and it’s not supposed to be like that,” said Aveanna’s mother, Daniale Mackin, who was with her that night. “Just to see her laying there, with no help. Not moving. It’s all I can remember.”

The family, with their attorneys held a press conference to talk about the lawsuit. They say they want to see changes at the mall so this doesn’t happen to another child.

“Get some better security,” she said. “It could have so been easy if they just escorted them off the premises and watch them leave. This wouldn’t have happened.”

The plaintiffs are seeking damages in excess of $25,000, but state that “In reality, the damages to the Estate of Aveanna Propst far exceed” that amount.

WBTV News reached out to all the defendants listed in the lawsuit for a comment, but they did not send a response.

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