Ben Russell, NBC 5 News
Dallas police say 30-year-old Michael Mayo was fatally shot after pointing a gun at officers during a standoff following a car chase Monday afternoon.
A chase in South Dallas led to a standoff that ended with Dallas police fatally shooting an armed man outside of the Southwest Center Mall Monday afternoon.
Dallas police shot the man after he exited his vehicle and began waving around a gun before pointing it at officers in the mall parking lot, police said.
The man's girlfriend, who had been brought to the scene by police, began screaming when the gunfire erupted.
About an hour before, at about 1:20 p.m., officers on foot patrol reported smelling marijuana coming from a red, 4-door Ford sedan parked outside the Dallas Inn on the 3300 block of Marvin D. Love Freeway. The officers approached and, upon doing a background check, learned the occupants may be armed and dangerous with active felony warrants.
Officers called for backup and, when it arrived, the driver of the sedan, later identified as 30-year-old Michael Mayo, suddenly backed up. A woman, later identified as the driver's girlfriend, jumped out of the car just before he sped toward the police officers, nearly striking one, police said.
The officers gave chase as Mayo led them through an area of South Dallas that included Camp Wisdom Road, Cockrell Hill Road, U.S. Highway 67 and Interstate 20.
About a half-hour into the chase, Mayo stopped the sedan along a Frontage Road of southbound U.S. 67, adjacent to the mall. Dallas police, with guns drawn, ordered the driver out of the vehicle while attempting to inch closer behind the cover of more than a half-dozen police cars.
After several minutes, Mayo, who still refused to exit the vehicle, pulled away from the scene and continued at a slow speed down the service road before stopping again. About a minute later, Mayo then quickly pulled into the Southwest Center Mall parking lot before stopping on the northeast side of the mall.
Police stopped all traffic in that general area, surrounded the vehicle and, believing the man to be armed and dangerous, asked all businesses in the immediate vicinity to shelter in place.
With the driver surrounded, police began negotiating with him to get him to surrender. He briefly stepped out of the vehicle and put a gun to his head before getting back inside the car and closing the door, police said.
Dallas SWAT arrived and, along with the nearly two dozen police cars at the scene, began to cordon off nearby parking areas around the mall. At about 2 p.m., Dallas SWAT asked for a temporary flight restriction over the mall; Chopper 5 complied and moved back to a distance of two miles from the scene.
A short time later, Dallas SWAT armed personnel carriers pulled into the parking lot and took up positions around Mayo's vehicle while officials continued to try to convince the man to surrender peacefully.
A few moments later, at about 2:15 p.m., Mayo got out of the car, waved the gun around and pointed it at police, officials said. Dallas police said three SWAT officers fired on Mayo, who was then seen slumping over for a moment before falling to the pavement.
Dallas officers, accompanied by an armored SWAT vehicle and an ambulance, then slowly surrounded the motionless man and his car.
Witnesses to the standoff told NBC 5 they were in the crowded mall parking lot when the driver pulled in and witnessed the entire standoff.
"I don't know if he shot first or what, but he ended up on the ground," said Ron Shanklin, witness.
Though it was initially unclear whether Mayo shot himself or if he had been shot by police, the Dallas police later tweeted that they were investigating the incident as an officer-involved shooting.
One witness, Felicia Cleveland, said she was close enough that she could hear police negotiators talking with the man before he died and that he was asking for his girlfriend.
"You could hear him, he was saying it. And they kept saying, 'He wants his girlfriend, he wants his girlfriend.' And then the last time he got out of the car he showed the gun and that's when they shot him," said Cleveland.
The incident remains under investigation. The three SWAT officers involved in the shooting, Sr. Cpl. Gerardo Huante, Sr. Cpl. Robert Hamilton and Sr. Cpl. Marshall Milligan, are all on administrative leave. Such leave is customary following an officer-involved shooting.
Police ask that anyone who may have shot video of the standoff to share it with them. Those who are able to do so can call 214-671-3661 to make arrangements to share their video.
Court Records Show Lengthy Criminal Record
A search of court records shows Mayo had a lengthy criminal record which included evading arrest, possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, possession of marijuana, burglary of a habitation as well as robbery and theft over $1,500.
In 2013, he was convicted of theft over $20,000 — court records show he stole more than 120 catalytic converters from Mid-Cities Auto in Grand Prairie. The car parts were discovered in Irving where police said Mayo and accomplices were painting them black.
Court records show Mayo had violated parole in February 2014 and was listed as a wanted "violent offender."
NBC 5's Ben Russell and Ken Kalthoff contributed to this report.