BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — A 19-year-old man died in a shooting that caused the Mall of America to shut down Friday night, less than two days before Christmas.
Bloomington Police Chief Booker Hodges says around 7:50 p.m., officers heard gunshots on the first floor of Nordstrom. There were 16 officers working at the mall at the time of the shooting.
Hodges says it appears there was a physical altercation prior to the shooting involving anywhere between 5-9 people. The man was pronounced dead at the scene.
A spectator was hit by a stray bullet in their jacket, but was not injured.
Police have not arrested anyone in connection with the shooting.
“This is just completely stupid,” Hodges said. “We’re going to catch you [the suspects]we’ll lock you up.”
Videos posted on social media show customers hiding in stores. Some videos show customers running for cover after a loud bang. A spectator’s coat was grazed by a bullet.
This is the second lockdown Mall of America has gone on this year–shots fired outside the Nike store led to a lockdown in August. On New Year’s Eve 2021went into lockdown after two people were shot on the third level of the mall.
The mall prohibits weapons on the premises, but does not have metal detectors at the entrances. It began month-long testing of the use of a “weapon detection system” at its northern entrance in October.
The mall says it will reopen Saturday at 10. The Nordstrom store will remain closed.
“I really feel like the family, the mom, the dad, the other relatives, the mayor and I talked to before they came out here — they’re in pain, and rightfully so, for something that shouldn’t have happened,” Hodges said.
The Mall of America released the following statement:
“Just before 8:00 PM tonight, the Bloomington Police Department responded to a shooting contained within a tenant space. As a result, the Mall of America was placed on lockdown. The lockdown has since been lifted. The Mall is now closed for the evening.”
The Bloomington Police Department plans to provide another update on Saturday.
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