Slain man's family addresses suspect

  • Article by: NICOLE NORFLEET , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 17, 2012 - 6:55 PM

A friend of victim Jason Youngmark's needs to turn himself in, relatives said. "Stop playing games."

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Activists and relatives of Jason Youngmark, a 33-year-old man fatally wounded at a barbecue last weekend, gathered Saturday outside the north Minneapolis house where the shooting occurred. They called on the suspect, a friend of Youngmark’s, to turn himself in.

Photo: Marlin Levison, Star Tribune

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The family members of shooting victim Jason Youngmark are losing their patience.

In an afternoon vigil Saturday in north Minneapolis, relatives and community activists pleaded for the suspected shooter of the 33-year-old Brooklyn Center man to turn himself in.

"Stop playing games," Jermar Arradondo, Youngmark's older brother, said at the gathering.

More than 50 people attended the vigil near the house in the 2600 block of Emerson Avenue N. where Youngmark was fatally shot March 10 during a barbecue.

Relatives say the suspect was a friend of Youngmark's who has called the family several times to apologize. But words, they say, don't mean as much as action would.

"At least face me," said Jerome Arradondo Sr., Youngmark's father.

Police have said the circumstances surrounding the shooting remain under investigation. Sgt. Steve McCarty said Saturday that no one has been arrested in Youngmark's death.

Youngmark, the second of Minneapolis' three homicide victims of 2012, died early last Sunday at North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale after being shot a little before 10:30 p.m. at the barbecue the night before.

Youngmark and his wife had seven children, ages 1 to 10, three of whom are autistic. Youngmark also had a 12-year-old stepson.

His death was one of several recent violent acts that have shaken north Minneapolis. Youngmark was killed several blocks from where Yellow Cab driver William Harper, 56, of Roseville, was gunned down in his stopped taxi and down the street from where 3-year-old Terrell Mayes Jr. was shot and killed by a stray bullet in December.

No arrests have been made in the deaths of Harper or Terrell, McCarty said.

V.J. Smith, president of Minneapolis MAD DADS, an anti-violence organization that helped organize the vigil, admitted that he gets "sick and tired" of talking about homicides in north Minneapolis. But, he said, members of the community will continue to speak out against violence in their neighborhood.

"We're never going to stop," Smith said.

Those who wish to donate to Youngmark's wife and children can visit www.thebuildingblocks.org.

Nicole Norfleet • 612-673-4495; Twitter: @stribnorfleet

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