allen mall shooting

‘I Am Not Ready,' Allen Outlet Employees Share Anxiety Ahead of Wednesday's Reopening

The outlets hours will be from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon until 6 p.m. on Sunday -- store hours may vary

NBC Universal, Inc.

This week employees are returning to work inside the stores of the Allen Premium Outlets. It's been almost a month since a deadly mass shooting, and some workers tell NBC 5 they've experienced some anxiety about going back.

One retail employee, Niqi Crump, said being on the property isn’t easy.

“I still shake. I still feel that shake that was hanging with me in that office that afternoon,” she said.

The Allen Premium Outlets are expected to reopen to the public Wednesday, nearly a month after a gunman opened fire in the parking lot, killing eight people and injuring seven others.

NBC 5 News
All eight people killed when a gunman opened fire on shoppers at the Allen Premium Outlets on Saturday, May 6, 2023, have been identified.

On Memorial Day, Crump was back at the store where she works, folding clothes. She said the work brought back memories. For that reason, she told us she’s relieved she won't be on the clock Wednesday when shoppers return. Instead, she’s scheduled to return Saturday, giving her a few more days to prepare mentally.

“I am not ready,” she said. “Thankfully I'm not scheduled for that day [Wednesday] so I can hear feedback from my coworkers before I get there this weekend.”

She was working the day when shots rang out from the parking lot. Weeks later, clocking in for work brings back memories.

“We have to clock-in in the back office where we were hiding,” Crump said. “So even in just a few moments back there, I kind of felt my face getting tense.”

According to a message shared on the outlet's website, retailers will have the flexibility to set their own hours and resume operations at their own pace. The statement goes on to read in part:

“As we prepare to reopen Allen Premium Outlets, we do so with deep gratitude for the compassion and goodwill of so many.”

Crump's request of the public is kindness and patience.

“Definitely respect the employees, respect the associates,” she said.

She said returning is inventible and though difficult she feels like she's not in this alone.

The outlet said plans have begun for a permanent memorial to honor the victims and their families. For more information on hours and operations visit the Allen Premium Outlets.

The center's hours will be from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon until 6 p.m. on Sunday. Hours of the 120 individual stores may vary, however, as each individual business has its own reopening plan. Shoppers are encouraged to check with each store before visiting.

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