3 charged in Mall of America killing days before Christmas

Dec 28, 2022, 11:49 PM | Updated: Dec 29, 2022, 1:54 pm

Personas se retiran en sus vehículos tras un tiroteo en el Mall of America, el centro comercial más grande de Estados Unidos, en Bloomington, Minnesota, el viernes 23 de diciembre de 2022. (AP Foto/Abbie Parr)

(AP Foto/Abbie Parr)

              Bloomington (Minn.) Police Chief Booker Hodges speaks during a news conference at the Mall of America in Bloomington about a shooting Friday, Dec. 23, 2022. A teenager was killed during a shooting at the mall that sent frightened customers at the nation’s largest shopping center racing into a lockdown just before the holiday weekend. Hodges said the victim was a 19-year-old man. A bystander's jacket was also grazed by a bullet during the shooting. (Kerem Yücel/Minnesota Public Radio via AP)
            
              Personas se retiran en sus vehículos tras un tiroteo en el Mall of America, el centro comercial más grande de Estados Unidos, en Bloomington, Minnesota, el viernes 23 de diciembre de 2022. (AP Foto/Abbie Parr)
            
              An officer stands inside Nordstrom at Mall of America after a shooting, Friday, Dec. 23, 2022, in Bloomington, Minn. (AP Photo/Abbie Parr)
            
              Security officers speak inside a store at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn., after reports of shots fired on Friday, Dec. 23, 2022. (Kerem Yücel/Minnesota Public Radio via AP)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Three suspects were charged Thursday in connection to the Mall of America shooting on Dec. 23 that killed 19-year-old Johntae Hudson, of St. Paul, inside the mall’s Nordstrom store.

Taeshawn Adams Wright, 18, of Minneapolis, was charged with second-degree murder and second-degree assault, and two 17-year-olds were charged with second-degree riot.

Two others were arrested on Dec. 24 in connection to the shooting, but they have not yet been charged because some suspects have refused to cooperate with the investigation, Police Chief Booker Hodges told the Star Tribune.

“We expect additional arrests and criminal charges associated with this case in the near future,” Hodges said. “Our efforts to lock up everyone responsible for this incident will not cease.”

Police said a dispute between two groups of young men led to an exchange of gunfire at the mall on Dec. 23.

According to charges, Hudson was shot eight times and died in the men’s section at Nordstrom. Witnesses, mall security guards and first responders tried to save him. Police found cartridge casings near Hudson’s body, along with a .40 caliber firearm that was “determined to be associated” with Hudson.

Frightened customers scrambled for safety, and the nation’s largest shopping center went into lockdown on one of the final days of the holiday shopping season.

Mall spokesperson Laura Utecht said metal detectors were added to the mall’s north entrance in October in a testing phase, but they were not operational during the most recent shooting. Other security features — including cameras, K9, bike patrol and plainclothes officers — have been put into place, Utecht said.

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3 charged in Mall of America killing days before Christmas