By CBSNewYork Team

MAPLEWOOD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Authorities in Maplewood, New Jersey are now offering a $50,000 reward for information in the deadly shooting of 18-year-old soccer star Moussa Fofana.

The Columbia High School junior was killed more than a month ago while walking with his best friend through Underhill Sports Complex. The friend was also shot but survived his injuries.

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Friends said the teens were cutting through the field to go to another friend’s house and watch a boxing match.

Moussa Fofana, right, playing soccer for Columbia High School. (Photo: Fofana family)

His mother told CBS2 he hugged her extra tight before leaving home that night.

“Gave me a kiss. I’m like, ‘C’mon, you’re hurting my leg.’ He said, ‘C’mon mom. You’re always complaining. I’m going to kiss you anyway,’” Hawa Fofana said in an exclusive interview.

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The 18-year-old left a lasting mark in the community, where thousands have signed a petition to rename the field in his memory.

“Moussa was a very, very dedicated child in the community,” his uncle, Imam Sheick Swaray, said at his funeral. “He was a child that loved his mother, respect his mother, that love everybody. Once you see Moussa, you don’t see nothing but his smile, his beautiful smile.”

Former Maplewood mayor Fred Profeta donated $10,000 to the reward fund and has asked others to contribute too.

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Anyone with information is asked to contact the Essex County prosecutor’s office at 1-877-TIPS-4EC or 1-877-847-7432.

CBSNewYork Team