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Family identifies 19-year-old killed in Mall of America shooting

"He was supposed to go to the mall to find like a sweater to go with his shoes to go to his friend's birthday that night," explained a tearful Hudson.

ST PAUL, Minn. — For 22-year-old Ja'Nayea Hudson, life will never be the same. 

"I just try to act like he's still here," said Hudson, speaking about her brother, 19-year-old Johntae Hudson of St. Paul. 

"He came in my room yesterday to say hi to me and my son and then he left.” said Hudson. "He was funny, sometimes quiet, like everybody loved him. He was a people person, he was trying to get his own place and apply for college."

Dreams cut short for a man who Bloomington Police say was shot and killed at the Mall of America Friday night. 

"He was supposed to go to the mall to find, like, a sweater to go with his shoes to go to his friend's birthday that night," explained a tearful Hudson. 

Police say Hudson was one of several young men who got caught up in a physical altercation just moments before he was shot multiple times. 

"At first I just hoped like it was just like a minor bullet wound or something, I didn't think nothing too serious about it, until like, they said they were trying to find a pulse so I just assumed the worst but I was hoping for the best," said Hudson after she got the call that her brother had been shot.

While his connection to the men involved is unknown, his sister says there were friend groups he was trying to avoid. 

"They got stuff going on, but he was trying to get away from all that."

Yet once again tears flow for another life lost to the streets and these senseless acts of gun violence. 

"Like y'all say y'all part of the streets, street code is you don't do that stuff around families, like kids and that," said Hawi Abdurahman, a close friend of Johntae's. 

"This should not be happening in a mall where there's children, people shopping," said Abdurahman. 

"Stay away from the wrong crowds because the wrong crowds is going to lead you to destruction," urged Hudson. 

A GoFundMe page has been set up by Johntae's family to assist with funeral expenses. 

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