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Criminal complaint highlights argument that led to Sunday's fatal shooting at Fox River Mall

Fox River Mall shooting suspect Dezman V. Ellis
Posted at 6:51 PM, Feb 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-04 11:03:22-05

GRAND CHUTE, Wis. (NBC26) -- Things like this don't happen often in a town like Grand Chute.

For community resource officer Travis Waas, Sunday's shooting was almost unimaginable.

"We want to be optimistic and think this can never happen here," Waas said. "But no community is immune for something like this."

Now, police continue to look for the teen they believe to be responsible, while prosecutors have filed charges.

"An arrest warrant has been issued for Dezman Ellis (17)," Waas said. "The two charges that we have are first-degree intentional homicide and first-degree recklessly endangering safety."

If convicted of those charges, Ellis could face life in prison.

According to witness accounts in a criminal complaint, 19-year-old victim Jovanni Frausto's girlfriend stated she, her boyfriend and her niece randomly encountered Ellis and three other girls they were familiar with near Forever 21 within the mall.

The report then states Ellis and Frausto exchanged words. The witness account says the issue was over a girl in the group who the victim started to "talk with" after she and the shooter broke up.

One witness says Ellis stated "Back up… back up. I will shoot this place up. I'll kill you."

Multiple witnesses then heard gun shots.

"It's affected countless people, Waas said. "[It affected] Obviously the decedent and his friends and family, the innocent bystander that was shot, his friends and family, and all of the people that were affected just by sheltering in place out there."

Now days later, Ellis remains on the loose. He's been charged with homicide. And police continue to investigate.

"There's some very good leads that our investigators are working on," Waas said.