PINE BLUFF , Ark. – More than a week after two teens lost their lives and two others were injured in a shooting in Pine Bluff, one of the families said they’re hoping for justice.
On March 7, Pine Bluff Police Department said four people were shot while in a car outside the Sunset Village Apartments.
Police said two were injured, one with minor injuries and the other unknown as of now. As for the other two in the back seat, they were pronounced dead at the scene.
Both 18-year-old Asharray Thomas and a 16-year-old boy, who is not being identified due to his age, lost their lives.
The family of Julian Tolbert says it was their 16-year-old boy who was killed. They add that the heartache they feel is unimaginable.
Tolbert’s mother Andrea Tolbert-Christopher says her son was a sophomore at Pine Bluff High school, also a place she works, he was always involved in school activities and was the life of the party.
“He was responsible, reliable, trustworthy, smart, he helped me out a lot,” Tolbert-Christopher said.
Loletha Tolbert is his aunt, she said she still can’t believe Tolbert is gone.
“We’re going to truly miss him and we also want to send our condolences to the young lady’s family,” Tolbert said.
She said he was warm-hearted.
“He always let you know that he loved you,” Tolbert said.
Tolbert said her nephew was a big brother to his two younger siblings and he had a lot to live for.
“He boxed, he used to play football. He was an all around athlete.”
Tolbert-Christopher said she misses her son’s presence.
“His smile, his laugh, his laugh was contagious,” stated Tolbert-Christopher.
She said she is trying to stay strong because she knows it is what he would have wanted.
“I know my son is in a better place, I’m sad. I’m not really angry because I knew that my son was loved,” Tolbert-Christopher said.
Tolbert said her family is very tight knit and have faith Julian, who they also gave the nickname J.T., will get justice along with the other people who were shot
“We’re going to celebrate J.T. as much as we can keep his memory alive, hoping to bring peace in the community, but J.T. name will live, we will celebrate him. we will,” Tolbert said.
Tolbert said the funeral for Julian is on Saturday and they hope it brings everyone peace.
Detectives arrested 21-year-old Kavon Bledsoe in connection with the shooting. He is facing two counts of capital murder, one of first-degree battery along with other charges for tampering with evidence and a terroristic act.
At least three more suspects are wanted in the homicide according to Pine Bluff police.
The two teens who did not survive are the fifth and sixth homicide victims in Pine Bluff for 2023.
Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to contact the detectives at 870-730-2096, the tip line at 870-730-2106 or the dispatch center at 870-541-5300.