Baltimore County police have identified the victim of the fatal shooting Monday night at Towson Town Center.
Rodney Vest Pridget, 19, who lives in the Baltimore area, was found dead of gunshot wounds about 6:22 p.m. near a service entrance to Nordstrom at the mall, investigators said Tuesday morning.
Detectives do not believe the shooting was a random act, but officials said they were not providing additional details at this time due to the continuing investigation. Detectives are investigating a number of leads, including video footage recovered from the mall, police said. There is no suspect information at this time.
At an afternoon news conference, Police Chief Jim Johnson sought to reassure county residents that that the mall is safe for holiday shopping.
"We know now, based on the investigation so far, that this was absolutely not a random act of violence. This was absolutely not a robbery," he said. Johnson added that surveillance from both within and outside of the mall is "playing a significant role in helping clear this case."
Police have determined that the victim and shooter were in the mall prior to the incident. He would not say whether there could be more than one shooter.
Johnson was joined by County Councilman David Marks, who represents the Towson area.
"I think most people recognize that this is an isolated incident," said Marks, a Republican. "[The mall] is going to be probably more safe than it was before."
On Twitter, the microblogging website, people who knew Pridget began to share their thoughts and grief Tuesday morning.
"Rest in peace rodney v. pridget :(((," tweeted Shalaya Eubanks.
According to city court records, Pridget had lived at addresses in Northeast Baltimore and Parkville during the past year.
In September, he was sentenced to three years of supervised probation stemming from an August 2010 incident, Baltimore court records show. Pridget had pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and fourth-degree burglary, according to court records.
Shoppers returned to the mall today to continue their holiday shopping. For some, the news of the shooting made them pause.
Earlina Miles, of Towson, was shopping at Nordstrom and said she hadn't heard about the shooting. But she said, when she learned the man had been shot in the early evening, she said "that's exactly why I come here in the day time."
At night, "there's a lot of people just kind of watching people shop I have noticed," she said.
Dennis Colhouer, of Ellicott City, was doing his Christmas shopping, and said he comes to the mall five or six times a year. "Most of that stuff is not random," he said of the shooting. "So it doesn't really concern me."
Robin Smith, who sells Lindt chocolates at a kiosk, said it seemed like a normal day at the mall. "It doesn't seem like anyone is scared to come up here," she said.
Police blocked vehicle access to several mall entrances Monday evening, but shoppers were able to enter and exit the mall from Dulaney Valley Road.
Detectives are asking anyone with information to contact the Baltimore County Police Department at 410-307-2020.
Sun reporter Gus G. Sentementes contributed to this report.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun