(NBC News) Panic set in overnight in New York’s Times Square when the backfire of a passing motorcycle was mistaken for gunfire.
In West Valley City, Utah a loud noise inside a mall triggered chaos.
“As you can imagine there’s a heightened sense of fear with things that have gone on around our country and people were in a full on panic,” says Roxanne Vainuku of the West Valley City Police.
With the nation on edge, President Trump travels to Dayton and El Paso Wednesday, cities struggling in the wake of back-to-back mass shootings.
The mayors in both grieving communities have suggested the president may get a chilly reception.
“He’s made his bed and he has to lie in it,” says Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley. “His rhetoric has been painful for many in our community and I think that people should stand up and say they’re not happy.”
Prior to departing, the president denied his anti-immigrant rhetoric may have helped create a hostile climate ahead of the El Paso shooting.
“No, I don’t think my rhetoric has at all,” Mr. Trump said. “I think it brings people together.”
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