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New Jersey mall shooting suspect dead

PARAMUS, N.J. (AP) - Authorities say a man suspected of firing multiple shots and causing a lock down at New Jersey's largest shopping mall has been found dead of a self-inflicted wound.

The body of 20-year-old Richard Shoop of Teaneck, N.J., was found in a back area of the Garden State Plaza mall in Paramus early this morning. Authorities say Shoop killed himself with the same weapon he used at the mall and that a note was found.

There were no other injuries.

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Hundreds of officers are searching for a gunman at a New Jersey mall not far from Manhattan.

Witnesses at the Garden State Plaza Mall -- in Paramus -- say the gunman was dressed in black and wearing a helmet. He's said to have fired up to five shots shortly after the mall closed at 9 p.m.

A spokeswoman for the Paramus Police Department won't confirm whether shots had been fired inside the mall.

A manager at a Chili's restaurant told The Associated Press the business is on lockdown. She said a manager at Nordstrom ran over to use the phone and said there had been a shooting.

One customer told NorthJersey.com she was in a clothing store when she saw a man walk by and then heard three shots followed by two more. She said he appeared to be wearing body armor and was wearing a helmet with the visor pulled up.

Other shoppers tweeted that they were escorted from the mall by armed state troopers. Paramus is about 20 miles west of Manhattan.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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