Mourners keep in mind Oakland teen killed by Stray Bullet; Reward Supplied For The Occasion – CBS San Francisco
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) – A student in Oakland went out of his way to work towards a bright future. But his life has been shortened by a stray ball and information is sought to find his killer.
Thursday would have been Demetrius Roosevelt Fleming’s 19th birthday. Instead, his funeral took place. After his funeral, family and friends released pigeons and sang “Happy Birthday”.
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“It’s just not the same. His laughter is missing, his smile is missing, his charisma. Only all the work energy in the building is flat, ”said Sequence Young of Berkeley Youth Alternatives.
The murder hit Young so hard that she took time off from work to mourn the loss.
Young has been Fleming’s mentor and supervisor on his internship for the past two years.
They had worked together the day before before a stray ball killed Fleming around 6:30 p.m. on April 10. Oakland police said he was a passenger in a truck driving around International Boulevard and 68th Avenue when he was hit by a stray ball.
Detectives said there was a shooting in the area at the time that had nothing to do with Fleming or the people in the truck.
“I want to give (the garden) a name change. I want a mural of him in the garden. I want a badge from him in the hallway. I just don’t want people to forget, ”Young said, referring to Fleming’s love of gardening.
She and others who knew Fleming said he was a hard working teenager trying to brighten the lives of those he met.
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“Demetrius pretty much grew up in the church,” said Bishop Bob Jackson of Acts Full Gospel Church.
Bishop Jackson said Fleming had attended Acts Full Gospel since he was five. The bishop said he was always the life of the party: funny, loving and sometimes a joke.
“We took them to camp, the kids and everyone. When he got off the bus, the first thing he ran into the woods was a snake. Came back with the snake and started chasing all the children in the camp. Always a guy. Just a funny guy, “Jackson recalled.
Aside from his internship, Fleming worked part-time in a Dollar Tree store and attended Berkeley City College.
Family and friends said he wanted to graduate and take care of his family.
“We’ve talked about cops who killed people on the street, but we haven’t talked enough about the murders that happen in the neighborhood almost every day. We have 44 murders in Oakland so far this year, “said Bishop Jackson.
“I just hope someone comes through and gives the justice we need because we’re not at peace right now,” said Young.
Friends will hold a ceremony in the orchard at Berkeley Youth Alternatives to celebrate Fleming’s life on Saturday afternoon.
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Oakland police said they currently have no suspects and are urging people to provide information. In this case, a reward of $ 15,000 was offered.