Family seeks justice after Akron mother found dead in her apartment

Posted at 6:18 PM, Oct 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-19 21:14:28-04

A heartbroken family is seeking justice three days after Carolyn Parker, an Akron mother, was found shot to death in her apartment on Weehawken Place on the city's southeast side.

On Monday, the father of Parker's 4-year-old son made an emotional 911 call after finding Parker dead on the floor. Police said Parker, 22, had been shot in the chest and a back door was found wide open.

On Thursday, Parker's mother and grandmother, Tonia Parker and Carolyn Jefferson, returned to the apartment to collect her belongings and were overcome with emotion.

Relatives described the young mom as a sweet and compassionate woman who would help out anyone she could. She worked at a Save-A-Lot store in Akron.

"This is my little baby girl shot cold dead laying on the floor," Tonia Parker said. "You can't walk with the Lord and serve the devil at the same time."

"It's at the point I don't know what to say, what to do. It is just that devastating to me," Jefferson added.

Police have not named any suspects in the killing. A police report shows the victim's apartment door was kicked in last April. Three people were arrested. Detectives have not said if there could be a connection between the break-in and the murder.

While Akron police said gun violence is not up in the city, News 5 found more than two dozen reports of shots fired over the past 20 months on streets near Weehawken off South Arlington Avenue. The area is a mix of public housing and privately-owned apartments.

The shootings included three homicides. Two of the cases were solved.

Last December, Robyn Lindner moved into the Chesapeake Pointe Apartments, the same complex where Parker was killed.

Lindner said she's afraid because she also heard gunshots on Tuesday and Wednesday, and on Thursday, someone pointed a gun at her from a car while she was walking.

"There's always shootings out here, but there's not solutions, no solutions at all. We need solutions. We need to save the babies out here that are being killed for nothing," Lindner said.

Police said there has been a refocused effort on that neighborhood and other parts of Akron since the summer.

The increased presence includes officers with the gun violence reduction team and ATF agents.

Police sources tell News 5 it's likely Parker knew her killer, but they are still investigating all possibilities.

In the meantime, her family is hoping they will get answers and the killer will be brought to justice.

"Turn him in. Turn him in. Lord knows. Please," her mother said through her tears.

Summit County Crimestoppers is offering a reward up to $2,000 for information that solves Parker's murder. Tipsters can remain anonymous when calling 330-434-COPS.