Just hours after St Paul police confirmed they are investigating a triple shooting that took place inside Malina's Sports Bar within an hour of closing time, family members identified the owner of the business as the man who was killed.
While family members asked for privacy as they grieve, they did confirm that Vone Moua was shot and killed early Sunday morning. He leaves behind a wife who is seven months pregnant and four children aged 13 and younger.
Moua was described as a well-respected member of the Hmong community who often donated his time to help less-fortunate children.
The shooting inside Malina's Sports Bar took place at about 2:40 a.m., roughly 40 minutes after closing time. So far, police have released few details except to confirm one man was killed, two others were injured, and that the public is not believed to be in danger.
"What we are looking at is what happened around bar closing, not after," explained Sgt. Paul Paulos. "the incident probably happened around bar closing and if people are in there, why are they in there late? That's what investigators are determining -- how this all came together and why it happened."
No arrests have been made, and police have not released the identities of the victims. Neighbors told FOX 9 News the two who survived were employees at the bar. One has since been released from the hospital and the other is expected to recover.
Investigators with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension were still at the scene as of Sunday morning to collect evidence from the neighborhood bar.
Neighbors told FOX 9 News Moua took over the business several years ago and had cleaned up the establishment; however, they say the area around the bar remains troublesome. In fact, a man was shot and killed on the same block in 2011.
"There's a lot of activity over here," Dustin Metcalfe told FOX 9 News. "It's sad because there's a lot of kids and good working people that get caught in it."
In 2006 and 2007, the bar was fined a total of $1,500 over failure to comply with a city ordinance requiring working surveillance cameras inside and outside the bar. There is no word from police whether or not the cameras were rolling with Sunday morning's shooting happened.
A friend of Moua who did not want to be identified told FOX 9 News he was supposed to be in the bar last night. Although he wasn't there, he's certainly heard the rumors about what took place inside.
"All I heard was some people started arguing with he owner," he said. "After that, they left and came back and there was a shooting."
Neighbors who live near the bar credit Moua with helping to turn the neighborhood around. They say he counseled kids in the office above the bar, was involved in local real estate and was known for kicking gang members out of his establishment.
Other neighbors say Moua's wife was in the bar when the shots fired and that the couple's four children were asleep in the basement at the time.
"Nobody deserves this -- especially a person like him," the friend told FOX 9 News. "Like I said, he's a kind person and my heart goes out to him and his family."
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