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Shooting victim was looking for new life

Sister remarks on man’s joy

The sister of a 25-year-old man shot dead Sunday night in south Fort Wayne says he had come here for a fresh start.

Jeremy Dewayne Crews, nicknamed “Kite,” moved to the city about four years ago from Alabama, said his sister, Shonreckia Crews, 29.

“He just came to try to start his life over,” she said.

Her brother played high school basketball and football in Alabama, and after moving to Fort Wayne, where his mother lives, he earned his GED at Ivy Tech, she said.

“He loved to dance, smile, keep everybody happy,” she said of her brother, who left behind a 5-month-old son.

Shonreckia Crews said she did not know why her brother was in the neighborhood where he was shot, and she could not explain why anyone would want to shoot him.

“I know whatever they killed him over it was petty,” she said, adding he couldn’t have had much money.

About 7:50 p.m. Sunday, police were called to the 2500 block of South Hanna Street, just north of East Pontiac Street. Crews was found outside, and he was taken to a hospital in critical condition with multiple gunshot wounds, police said. He died just before 10 p.m., according to the Allen County Coroner’s Office.

The coroner’s office identified Crews as the shooting victim Monday. His death was the third homicide in Fort Wayne and Allen County this year, the office said.

Sgt. Mark Brooks, a city police spokesman, said investigators had interviewed witnesses but that no arrests had been made and no motive had been determined.

A man who lives near the scene of the shooting told The Journal Gazette he heard one to two gunshots Sunday night. The man, who asked to remain anonymous for safety reasons, said he came outside and saw Crews on the ground of an empty lot next to an alley, with people standing around him.

The man noticed a vehicle driving down the alley, but it was too far away to get a good description. He said it looked like Crews had been shot in the upper chest and that he was complaining of pain in his side. He went into his home to retrieve a first aid kit, and just before he was about to start caring for Crews, paramedics arrived.

The man, who has lived in the neighborhood for almost two years, said he regularly hears gunshots at night.

“I’m ready to get my kids out of this area,” he said. “If I had my way about it, I’d get my family out of here today.”