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No motive offered in slaying of Campbell man



Published: Wed, August 11, 2010 @ 12:09 a.m.

By jeanne starmack

starmack@vindy.com

campbell

Police continued to search for suspects in a Friday night homicide as family and friends mourned the victim, 20-year-old Anthony Harrison.

Loved ones remembered him Tuesday — and reflected on the near-riot that followed his shooting near Tremble Avenue and Thirteenth Street.

He was well-known and liked in the community, they said. He lived on Chambers Street with his mother and worked as a stock boy at the Save-A-Lot on U.S. Route 422. He was planning to go to the New Castle School of Trades to become an electrician.

“Anthony was a good kid,” said his grandmother, Ana Santana Soto.

He did not have a car, so he walked everywhere, waving and smiling even at people he didn’t know that well, said family members. He was walking home from the Sta. Rosa de Lima Church Festival on Tenney Avenue with a friend around 10:15 p.m. when he was shot in the back. His friend was shot in the leg and survived.

Police are still at a loss for suspects and a motive, Campbell Detective Sgt. John Rusnak said Tuesday.

At the crime scene Friday, word of mouth had spread quickly, and a large crowd, mainly family and friends of Harrison’s, grew to between 60 and 80 people. A police report says people made threats and demanded to know why nothing was being done with Harrison’s body.

Rusnak said police tried to explain that they were waiting for the coroner. The body was covered, and the coroner arrived within a reasonable time, he said.

Some singled out a particular police officer, Dan Burich, so much so that Burich finally left the scene, the report says. Campbell called police from other jurisdictions.

Neighbor Chuck Schultz, who watched the episode unfold from his porch across the street, said that seemed to make the crowd madder.

Police from six neighboring communities parked along Thirteenth Street, as did people in the crowd. That area turned out to be part of the crime scene, and it was contaminated. Police later found seven shell casings there, Rusnak said.

It took about 40 minutes to control the crowd, Rusnak estimated.

Family members and friends said emotions were high, and the police weren’t sympathetic.

“Everybody was crying,” said Berlinda Soto, Harrison’s aunt. She said she asked where her nephew was, but police would not answer. “They looked at me like, ‘I’m not talking,’” she said.

“Lots of people have problems with cops around here,” she added. “I told them that night, ‘You stop everybody for nothing.’ People feel like they’re being hassled for no reason.”

Family members said Harrison was stopped a month ago while walking near his home because there had been a robbery in the area. He did not deserve that treatment, and it fueled the anger at the crime scene, they said.

Harrison’s mother, Teresa Soto, said police found marijuana on him during a traffic stop about a year ago.

That, she said, was the only incident he’d had with police, and he learned his lesson from it.

Rusnak said police do not profile people. “If you have an unsafe vehicle, you’re going to get stopped.”

He also defended the silence of police at the crime scene, saying the shooter still could have been there. He also said a family member might try to rush to the body. “I have a crime scene to process,” he said.

Police found two sweat jackets and two handguns behind a building on Tremble. Rusnak said he gave the evidence to the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation.

Harrison’s funeral is Saturday at Sterling- McCullough Williams Funeral Home, 632 Belmont Ave. in Youngstown. Calling hours are 9 to 10 a.m., and the funeral begins at 11 a.m. Instead of flowers, the family requests donations for funeral expenses. They can be given at the funeral home, or check with First National Bank.

On Tremble, a memorial has sprung up with a mix of stuffed animals, pictures and bottles of beer.

Craig Bembery, a friend, was one of many who stopped by. “He was like a brother,” Bembery said.

Schultz didn’t know Harrison well. But he’d seen him around, and he’d gotten those waves and smiles. He started the memorial, he said, with a few candles.


Comments

1UnionForever(1470 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

The Campbell police officers have a very tough job to do. Too many ganstas and not enough officers to deal with them all.

No police officer stops you for "nothing" - what a really dumb comment his aunt made. This just shows the lack of a moral value system amongst this class of people and respect for the laws.

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2Rokscout(310 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

I'm sorry bit a quick check of courtview shows that it appears to have been a little more than "some weed" he was involved with. A guilty plea to F3 drug trafficking does not come from someone who got caught with a joint (which is a minor misdemeanor). So while the above article names one officer by name, and insinuates he had "harassed" an innocent boy, it would appear that to the local police there he was on the radar as a dealer. Of course I am sorry when anyone loses a family member and wish it never had to happen, but at some point, people have to take off the kid gloves and tell people that the police are not where fingers should be pointing.

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3Lifes2Short(3877 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

There damned if they do and damned if they don't. I can't understand how the police are at fault for this young mans murder. If anything instead of bad mouthing them you should be trying to help them solve the case. I would be talking to them day and night trying to get the animal/s off the street that did this, not put down the police.

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4shutyourface(246 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

I agree with all this good comments.

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5onthetown(254 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

Actually, the docket for his trafficking case mentions cocaine, not marijuana. And based on the amount recovered (less than a gram), it was to be reduced to an F5 charge, indicating possession.

Either way, no one deserves to be shot down like this, and the family is in need of comfort and consolation, regardless of whether or not he was clean.

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6seminole(476 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

If dude was rolling with coke a year or so ago then one could guess he was still recognized in that world and this is the result of a debt or some past event. The stop you for nothing comment is typical of folks when they want to start the typical process of dropping the race card, just a quieter way of saying it. Yea, this is unfortunate but look around folks: people are getting shot arond this cesspool on a regular basis. There are no morals or respect for life. Punk a-- thugs use guns because they are exactly that: punk a-- thugs.

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7dott191(7 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

Having lost someone in Campbell this year, the police are not the problem. This boy did not deserve to be shot, but moving the body would destroy evidence. They cannot process a scene in a few minutes, If you watch the news, it takes days sometimes to get all of the evidence. Rusnak is doing his best with a small city, and big problems.

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8woolyd(579 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

UNION police sometimes will stop people for no legitimate reason. I dont know about this case but there are crooked cops who bend the rules.

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9southsidedave(4780 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

I read this story and am confused as to why everyone thinks that this tradegy occured because of the police. The police had nothing to do with the death of this young man, they are however, duty bound to investigate and must preserve the crime scene for analysis.

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10Ytown05(11 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

Good post Dott..you summed it up all in a nutshell...

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11Stormieangel(136 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

It s so sad that there is so much hostility towards cops. I don't care much for them myself but the criticism here seems a bit much. I am sure the family was operating on pure emotion. I cannot imagine the hell of losing a child, no matter what age, but to lose them to such violence would have to be worse. Watch enough TV, which I watch none or read enough crime books, of which I read many, will alert anyone to the need of the police securing the scene of the crime so as to compromise it/evidence as little as possible. I hope the family has calmed down some and will do their damnest to help these cops find out who shot this kid...yes, to me, he is kid!!! My heart goes out to the family and I wish the cops some good fortune in finding and prosecuting the culprits.

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12Siouxi(122 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

My sincere sympathies to those who loved him.

The anger of the crowd was misplaced. Instead of the police, they should be angry at the coward who fired the gun. Not allowing the police to conduct their investigation was foolish. Let them do their jobs, find out who did this and really give you someone to be angry with.

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13mzluci(4 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

The anger for the police stems from the fact that the day before two young kids walking from the fest were robbed by the same people that murdered my nephew the day after and injured his friend. So the fact that more wasnt done to prevent this from happening is where the frustration comes from. And if this were a family member of yours and you witnessed the scene and lack of sympathy for the family or acknowledgement of our existence you would not be writing these things. In the uppercase neighborhoods the police would try to speak with the family try to explain what was going on comfort them in their time of lose be they stood there did nothing and said nothing to none of us. my sister his mom fainted when she seen him and they didnt come over to help her. it was hard not knowing what was going on when they didnt talk to you. And we are definately angry at the animals that took my nephew's life away it was horrible something i will never forget or forgive. WeWill Always Love You Anthony!!

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14L0L(660 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

All good posts!
Mzluci, I highly doubt that the police didnt care. Youre probably confusing concentration and making sure tehy do theor job right with lack of compassion. Im friends with a cop, believe me, theydont like seeing what you went through. Believe it or not. Also, maybe tehy couldnt of been compassionate when they had to focus on controlling the scene. From what I hear it was ridiculous.

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15funkyfrante(1 comment)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

First off, to all you oblivious and ignorant people, this man was a good person. I watched him grow up and know his family well. And I am also quite good friends with many of the Campbell Police officers. There are entirely too many of you putting your 2 cents in where no one wants to hear it. Keep your idiotic sentiments to yourself. Leave this to the people of Campbell. We have some extremely sick and crooked cops here, but regardless, they weren't the ones handling this case. Rusnak and the others did exactly what they were supposed to do at the scene, but the processes following the initial investigation have been despicable. And Campbell is a good city. I have lived here my entire life and I have seen my fair share of good and bad. I have seen officers, who are currently suing the city hahaha, drop off drugs to kids and set up trap houses, and watched them leave the projects after getting off with a crackhead. But I have also seen Campbell cops with tears in there eyes over tragedies such as this one. And to end all of this, that young man and his family owe none of you idiots any kind of explanation. He did nothing wrong!! He was gunned down over a petty argument. He is not a drug dealer. All the drug dealers in Campbell are easy to spot and well known. He was not a "gangster" and your an A## for saying that. Shut up and leave the kid alone. He's the one that's dead. A##holes

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