Family pleads for answers in Lawndale man’s murder

Denise Wilson, whose son Lawrence Jackson was shot and killed at the Lawndale apartment complex where he lived in April, holds a candle as Jackson's friends speak at a vigil for the man where he was murdered./STAFF PHOTO BY Morgan Zalot
Denise Wilson, whose son Lawrence Jackson was shot and killed at the Lawndale apartment complex where he lived in April, holds a candle as Jackson's friends speak at a vigil for the man where he was murdered./STAFF PHOTO BY Morgan Zalot
Posted: May 19, 2012

IN THE LAWNDALE apartment complex where her 22-year-old son, Lawrence Jackson, was gunned down April 12, Denise Wilson looked to the sky during a vigil for her son Thursday and uttered a plea.

“If anybody saw anything that night, please say something,” she told residents who peeked out their third-floor windows at the crowd of about 75 who gathered at the complex on Oxford Avenue near Levick Street. “I’m begging y’all. Please.”

Jackson, a graduate of George Washington High School who worked for UPS, started a landscaping business with his brother and dreamed of a career as a musician, was shot several times in a courtyard between apartment buildings at 9:45 p.m. April 12. He died early the next morning.

Police have no leads in the case, and Jackson’s relatives and friends are frustrated that no one has come forward with information.

“Somebody heard something. Somebody saw it, too,” Wilson said as she stood in the courtyard overlooked by dozens of apartment windows.

Wilson, 41, organized the candlelight vigil at the complex — where Jackson and Monique Polite, his girlfriend of 11 years, had moved four months before his murder — in hopes of tugging at a witness’ conscience.

Friends and relatives of Jacksonshared memories and wrote messages on a poster with a smiling photo of him.

That’s one thing Lynelle Boose, 40, a friend of Jackson’s parents who watched him grow up, said she misses most. “Just the smile on his face when he greeted you,” Boose said. “Everything about him was beautiful.”

The group marched through the complex parking lot into the grassy courtyard, steadily chanting, “Justice for Larry.” A handful of youths playing basketball in the center of the courtyard stopped, wide-eyed, watching them pass.

Flanked by friends, Polite sobbed as they paused for a moment of silence, and Wilson closed her eyes.

“I was with this boy since I was 11 years old. It’s heartbreaking,” Polite said. She said she and Jackson had planned to move next year to Atlanta, her hometown, partly to get away from Philly’s violence. After Jackson’s murder, she moved out of the complex.

“I just can’t live next door to people that have this code of silence. For what?” she said. “I hope someone comes forward.”

Tipsters should contact detectives at 215-686-3334 or the police tip line at 215-686-8477, or send a text message to 773847. n

Contact Morgan Zalot at 215-854-5928 or zalotm@phillynews.com, or follow on Twitter @morganzalot.

|
|
|
|
|