A relative has identified a shooting victim in Brooklyn Park last week as a high school graduate who died hours after earning his diploma.
Reese Crenshaw, 19, was wounded shortly before 2 a.m. June 2 while attending a friend's party in Brooklyn Park. Crenshaw was taken by emergency responders to Unity Hospital in Fridley, where he died from a gunshot wound to the chest.
Daniel M. Walker, 31, of Bayport has been charged with second-degree murder and a firearms violation in connection with the shooting in a residential garage in the 9500 block of Thomas Avenue N. Walker, who has a lengthy criminal record, remains jailed in lieu of $1.5 million bail. He's due back in court July 5.
One witness told police he went with Crenshaw to the home to celebrate an acquaintance's birthday, the charges read.
Crenshaw graduated the previous day from Fairview Alternative High School in Roseville, according to an aunt, Allegra Sletten.
"His mother, my sister, was Reese's biggest fan and advocate," Sletten wrote on an online fundraising page she initiated to help the family with funeral and other related expenses. "Like all mothers, she wanted the best for her son. Some of her last words to him were, 'You see? You can do anything.'
"As you can imagine, her immense pride about her son's graduation was quickly replaced by a deep, dark sorrow that no parent should ever have to experience."
Sletten added that her nephew "wanted to be a better man for his daughter. … He was a child whose life was beginning."
According to the criminal complaint:
Crenshaw was freestyle rapping at a card table with Walker and others moments before the shooting. Walker stood up without provocation and shot Crenshaw with a handgun. The suspected weapon was recovered by law enforcement at residence in Brooklyn Park.
Walker fled the scene, and two witnesses took Crenshaw to the hospital.
Another witness said Crenshaw was "just sitting there, not even talking," before he was shot, the charges read.
Later last Friday, the officers found Walker in a Brooklyn Park apartment building, where he was spotted trying to leap from a third-floor balcony. Officers surrounded and arrested him.
The man living in the third-floor unit told police that Walker showed him news articles about the fatal shooting and "touted" that he shot the 19-year-old, the charges alleged.
Officers found a written note on Walker with instructions to tell someone, "I sold the gun that had the body on it." Walker allegedly snatched the note from the officers and swallowed most of it.
Walker later admitted killing Crenshaw. He claimed there was a $50,000 bounty on his life, and he said Crenshaw drew a gun and tried to shoot him first.
Walker has a lengthy criminal history, according to Minnesota court records, that includes five convictions for burglary, and one each for robbery, weapons possession and disorderly conduct.