CLEVELAND– Family, friends and members of the community gathered together for a vigil to remember the lives of four people, including two children, who were murdered in Cleveland’s Slavic Village neighborhood.
The candlelight vigil and balloon release was held at 6 p.m. Thursday on the corner of East 63rd Street and Fleet Avenue.
The bodies of David Cousin, Jr., 35; Takeyra Collins, 25; Armond Johnson, Jr., 6; and Aubree Stone, 2, were discovered Tuesday.
At about 8 a.m., Cousin was found shot to death in a field next to his home on East 63rd Street. As homicide detectives combed the neighborhood, they discovered the bodies of Collins and her children inside their home, which is located behind Cousin’s on the same property.
Cleveland police said the home had been set on fire.
“Only a monster could do that, only a person that has no regard for human life, especially for a baby, could do something that extreme,” said Jeanetta Price, a family friend of Takeyra Collins.
The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner ruled Cousin and Collins died of multiple gunshot wounds, and the children died from smoke inhalation.
On Thursday, Cleveland police announced aggravated murder charges were filed against 26-year-old Armond Johnson, Sr., father of the 6-year-old boy.
Police released few details about what happened, but said they believe Cousin may have simply come outside of his home at the wrong time.
“He stay here and he probably came out, you know to help,” said David Cousin, Sr. “Little David was a loving person, he had just started his own construction business, he do beats for records, you know, he’s a musician…he didn’t have any kids, but he helped everybody.”
“She had a personality out this world, she would give you the shirt off of her back, she loved her babies and they loved her, and anybody that knew her, you loved her, she didn’t meet a stranger, no matter where she went,” Price said.
“She will not be forgotten, her name will live on and we will make sure of that,” she added.
People who attend the vigil were asked to wear purple and white, and bring purple and white candles and balloons.