David, whom Global News is not identifying due to safety issues, was working behind the counter at Bazaar10 on Saturday when several people were getting off the escalator and making inappropriate gestures towards him during a busy shift on Saturday.
David said seven people then walked into the store minutes later, intimidating him and another staff member. The people allegedly threatened to kill him, he said.
“We were working alone. It’s absolutely insane because if you think about it, we have security hired in this mall to save us or protect us. They were nowhere to be seen,” he told Global News on Monday.
“They’re hooligans … If there’s one person and there are seven people standing in front of you with weapons, I would be pretty scared.”
David said he called 9-1-1 when the crowd reached into their pockets. He said he isn’t sure if they were carrying weapons.
Get the latest National news.
Sent to your email, every day.
“I grew up here. I came to this mall when I was a kid and it was never like this … I don’t know what else got affected but these kids here, they have no shame and they are not afraid of the law. So some action needs to be taken or something.”
Bharat Arya, owner of Bazaar 10, has been running the store for the last 40 years. He told Global News his main concern now is the safety of his employees and customers.
“For our customers, it’s not a safe place to do business,” he said. “It’s not the first incident. (The group) come very frequently here.”
Arya said he reached out to Sunridge Mall security and the Calgary Police Service after the first incident with the group but didn’t get the help that he needed.
“Our employees are very scared … For two years, we approached the (Sunridge Mall) security and they were helpless. Then when we contacted the local police station and they were also helpless. Sometimes they don’t even send the officer,” he said.
“We were told by the local police that whenever (incidents like this) happen, next time to call 9-1-1. That’s what we did. It’s still a threat to our employees.
“Now on Sunday, there were 15 kids … It means nothing has been done.”
Arya said the mall has been unsafe for customers and mall staff for a long time. He told Global News he would often see people using drugs in the bathrooms.
He’s calling on Sunridge Mall’s security team and the Calgary Police Service to do more to protect mall patrons and employees.
“It’s not a safe environment. Please provide us the safe environment so we can focus on our growth, hiring more employees, getting more business and support our economy,” Arya said.
“We are not trained to handle (violent people) … We are trained to do business, not trained to handle these goons.”
© 2024 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.