Promising teen shot dead in Newark

December 20, 2010 3:03:28 PM PST
Police are investigating the shooting death of a promising teenager in Newark.

The shooting happened on Lindsley Avenue Sunday morning.

Ronald Cocroft Jr. was a great student. Funny, smart, athletic and, his family says, innocent.

"He got shot in the head. Why? This kid is never out on a Sunday night. He is a straight A student," his father, Ronald Cocroft Sr., said.

While his parents were out bowling on Sunday night, Ronald Junior was shot in the head in front of his home on Lindsley Avenue around 7:00. The 16-year-old was gone before they made it back.

"He goes to church. He's never gotten into any trouble. Not in any gangs, no problems.... Nothing," his father said.

"He was a baby. He never got to experience anything. I just do not understand," Erica Hargrove, a cousin, said.

Police are following leads, piecing together what happened any why, as family members gather at his home to comfort one another and remember a promising life cut short without any explanation.

"We need to just put a stop to all this violence and black youth killing each other," Kimberly Wright, his aunt, said.

"My son was never out there, ever! I told him you stay in here. Stay safe cause out there is only death," Cocroft Sr. said.

His father says he prayed all the time that this day would never come.

"That's my boy. My boy. I can't even look around here, walk around. Gonna be hard without my son," he said.

Police confirmed Monday evening that they had arrested one suspect in the shooting.