North Carolina Apple Store permanently closes following spate of shootings

Apple Northlake Mall entrance
(Image credit: Apple)

A North Carolina Apple Store has closed for good, and with almost no warning, following at least three shootings in recent months. The shootings all happened in the mall where the store was located.

Apple Northlake Mall in Charlotte was closed as of 4 pm on March 1, 2023, the company has confirmed.

All employees have been told that they will be moved to a nearby store or given roles as part of Apple's online business, while a new store is set to open in early 2024.

Gone for good

Apple has updated the store's webpage to reflect its closure, saying that "in preparation for a new store we plan to open in the Charlotte area early next year, we will be permanently closing Wednesday, March 1st at 4 pm." The note continues, adding that "All of our team members will continue to support our Charlotte customers at Apple SouthPark and the Apple Store Online."

While Apple didn't explain why the closure had taken place, Bloomberg reports that the Northlake Mall was the scene of a shooting outside of a Macy's store on Tuesday. Another shooting happened in February, while a third shooting reportedly took place in December of 2022.

With a new store set to open in 2024, it seems unlikely that Apple intended to close the Northlake Mall store until that one was ready to open. To that point, Bloomberg notes that the store was open as normal prior to the announcement and that employees were only informed immediately prior to the store closing its doors for the last time.

Apple currently has around 270 stores across the United States with more open around the world. Closing a store in this manner is unusual, suggesting that the decision is at least somewhat related to Tuesday's shooting.

With the Northlake Mall store gone, buyers of this year's iPhone 15 will have to line up somewhere new. Apple is already steering customers toward the Apple SouthPark store.

The iPhone 15 lineup is set to be a big release for Apple, while the company's best Mac — the as-yet-unannounced Mac Pro — will also surely get pride of place at Apple SouthPark once it finally lands later this year.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.