LMPD: PRP shooting death was 'home invasion murder'

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by Joe Arnold

WHAS11.com

Posted on August 13, 2013 at 7:18 AM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 20 at 5:22 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky (WHAS11) -- A 21 year old man gunned down Monday night in Pleasure Ridge Park was the victim of a "home invasion murder" Metro Police said on Tuesday.

Police said at least three unidentified suspects were involved in the shooting of Paul "PJ" Barber in the 6800 block of the Crawford Crossing Place apartments.

"We believe that this was not a random act," said Lt. Todd Kessinger of the LMPD Homicide unit.  "We believe that the victim was targeted specifically."

"I cant imagine who would want to do this to PJ," said Elizabeth Barber, the victim's mother.  "He got along with everybody."

"He was a good child. He called me his number one, his 'ride or die.'"

PJ Barber was unarmed inside the apartment with his one week old son, fiancee and two other adults when the suspects busted open his front door, Kessinger said, adding the witnesses could not identify the suspects, who fled on foot.

Though Barber had faced several drug-related charges within the last two years, neither his friends or police believe his past could have predicted last night's violence.

"Not at all," said Angela Hawkins, who explained she has known Barber for six years.  "Never expected anything like this would happen at all."

"I say that he was targeted because we don't think that it was a random act," Kessinger explained.  "We think that they intentionally went to that location."

Kessinger said he is not aware of anything stolen from the apartment and it was unclear whether Barber had been shot inside or outside the apartment.

As Barber's family met with reporters below his second floor apartment late Tuesday morning, an apartment worker replaced the wooden steps where Barber lay bleeding the night before.

"If anybody knows, I hope they say something," said Elizabeth Barber.  "Speak up.  Let somebody know who took my baby."

And Barber had a message for whoever is responsible for her son's death.

"May God be with you," Barber said, struggling between sobs.  "You took my son. "There was no need in that."

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