Shoppers searching for last-minute holiday gifts at the nation's largest shopping mall instead found themselves on lockdown after a shooting that left one person dead. Police in Bloomington, Minnesota, say a 19-year-old man was killed at the Mall of America on Friday night after a fight broke out between two groups of around five to nine people, reports NBC News. At a news conference late Friday, Bloomington Police Chief Booker Hodges said that shots rang out just before 8pm local time inside a Nordstrom store inside the mall, per CNN. He noted there were about 16 police officers at the mall, including one who heard the shots, and they converged upon the Nordstrom.
Inside the store, they found the male victim, who'd been shot multiple times. The man died, despite CPR efforts by first responders. It's not clear what led to the altercation, which was captured on mall security cameras. The group involved is said to have fled the premises, and as of Saturday morning, no arrests had been made. The mall, meanwhile, went into lockdown shortly after the shooting as authorities tried to assess what had happened, with management asking guests to "please remain in the closest secure location until the lockdown has been lifted." About two hours later, the mall lifted the lockdown and instructed all visitors to leave the premises.
A bullet grazed another mall visitor's jacket, but there were no other reported injuries, per Hodges. The shooting comes nearly five months after shots were fired in the mall, spurring an hourslong lockdown and a countrywide manhunt. Two suspects were arrested in that case. "This is just stupid, stupid, stupid," Hodges said of Friday night's shooting, per FOX 9. "Whoever did this, we will catch them. And whoever helps them, we will lock you up, too." The mall was scheduled to reopen Saturday morning. (Read more Mall of America stories.)