Gunman Shoots, Kills Owner's Son Inside South Philadelphia Corner Store

An investigation is underway after a South Philadelphia store owner’s son was shot and killed while working inside the business on Tuesday

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What to Know

  • Xiao-Ding Li, 31, was shot and killed by a masked gunman while working inside his father's store on the 900 block of Porter Street in South Philadelphia on Tuesday.
  • Neighbors told NBC10 Li was helping his parents with the business while taking care of his own two children.
  • Police are searching through surveillance video and looking for possible witnesses.

Loved ones are mourning the son of a South Philadelphia store owner who was gunned down while working inside his father's business.

Xiao-Ding Li, 31, was working at the cashier inside Hoyu Grocery on the 900 block of Porter Street at 5:48 p.m. Tuesday when two masked men entered. One of the men then pulled out a gun and opened fire, striking Li in the chest.

The men fled the scene without stealing anything, police said. Customers found Li face down behind the counter. He was taken to Jefferson Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 6:26 p.m.

"It's just very unfortunate, he was such a nice, nice guy," Nicole Debella, a longtime customer at the store, told NBC10. "He just recently got married."

A gunman took a store owner’s life but didn’t take anything else in an attempted robbery in South Philly. Police are still investigating the homicide by interviewing neighbors and reviewing surveillance footage. NBC10's Denise Nakano has the details.

Neighbors told NBC10 Li was a hardworking man who was raising two young sons while helping his parents run the store.

"I know they opened the store 7:30 in the morning and don't close until 10 and they're open seven days a week," Rose DeMasi of South Philadelphia said.

Joe Bianchi, also of South Philadelphia, told NBC10 he had bought lottery tickets from Li minutes before the shooting.

"The last thing I said to him was 'Thanks' when he handed me my tickets," Bianchi said. "Instead of scumbags getting a job they got to rob a man's store."

The suspects were described as two men. One was wearing a 3/4 length, black hooded winter coat, a black hoodie, black pants, black sneakers and a black ski mask, police said. The second suspect was described as wearing a black, waist-length hooded winter jacket, black pants, black shoes and a black ski mask.

Investigators are searching through surveillance video and looking for possible witnesses.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Philadelphia Police Department.

There are additional resources for people or communities that have endured gun violence. Further information can be found here.

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