Minneapolis police on Friday arrested a 33-year-old man in connection with the fatal shooting of another man the night before in the Near North neighborhood.
A heated argument between the suspect and victim preceded the slaying, the city’s 20th of the year, police said.
In social media posts on Friday, friends and family members identified the victim as 28-year-old Lonzo Washington. He was found by police officers sent to investigate a report of shots fired just after 8 p.m. Thursday.
The shooting occurred in the 1000 block of Morgan Avenue N., across the street from the home of Fifth Ward Council Member Jeremiah Ellison. Officers tried to resuscitate Washington before paramedics arrived, but he was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.
The suspect is being held without bail in the Hennepin County jail on suspicion of murder. The Star Tribune generally does not name suspects before they are charged.
By Friday, Washington’s Facebook page was flooded with remembrances from loved ones shocked at his sudden death. “He had a whole family, trying to do the right thing,” one post said. Another remarked that Washington was “in a better place.”
Hennepin County court records show that both the suspect and the victim had several brushes with the law.
At a vigil Friday afternoon, relatives said a pair of prison stints had been a wake-up call for Washington, who had earned a welding license, stopped hanging out late and proposed to his girlfriend. Friday was their one-year anniversary, said Hope Addison Allen, his aunt.
“He got a job; he got an apartment,” said another aunt, Brandy Lewis.
“He always said, ‘I want to make myself better, I want to give them what I didn’t have growing up,’ ” Addison Allen said of Washington, one of five siblings.
Later, Addison Allen collapsed in tears, propping herself up against a makeshift memorial of balloons and photos that wrapped around a tree. Her nephew’s death had been “for no reason,” she wailed, as several people bent down to console her. “We lost somebody, and now that family gonna lose somebody — this has gotta stop.”
A bystander-recorded video of the shooting’s aftermath posted on social media showed detectives and officers milling around the scene, cordoned off with yellow police tape, as the victim’s body lay sprawled in the street near the middle of the block.
A witness told police that the victim and the suspect knew one another and had been in an argument just before the shooting. The male suspect ran from the scene.
It was at least the second episode of gunfire in the area in as many days. According to police records, ShotSpotter sensors detected gunfire just east of the homicide scene, in the 1100 block of Logan Avenue N. early on Tuesday.
Washington’s death brings the city’s homicide toll to 20, compared with the 24 slayings logged through the same date last year.