UPDATED: 10:00 p.m. ET, June 11 with accurate funeral location.
Originally published on June 7
Funeral plans are being revealed as a northern Florida community mourns the death of a Black mother of four who was brazenly gunned down last week by her allegedly racist neighbor in a shooting that has revived calls to end the state’s so-called Stand Your Ground self-defense law.
Ajike “AJ” Owens, 35, was killed Friday night in the city of Ocala by Susan Lorincz, who is accused of shooting through her own door while being confronted over an iPad that was taken from the children of the slain woman.
Owens was shot to death in front of her children.
With such an overwhelming response to a GoFundMe account that has exceeded its goal to help pay for Owens’ funeral, the homegoing service has been set for Monday, according to a press release emailed to NewsOne Wednesday afternoon.
The funeral is set to be held Monday, June 12, when Owens will be eulogized by civil rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton. Civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who has been retained by Owens’ family, is slated to deliver a call for justice at the funeral.
Owens’ funeral is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. Monday morning at Meadowbrook Church at 4741 SW 20th Street in Ocala.
Owens’ funeral was announced just hours after Lorincz, 58, was arrested on Tuesday afternoon. Lorincz has been charged with manslaughter with a firearm, culpable negligence, battery and two counts of assault.
“While we are relieved that the woman apparently responsible for the tragic killing of Ajike “AJ” Owens has been arrested, we are no less concerned that accountability has taken this long because archaic laws like Stand Your Ground exist,” attorneys Ben Crump and Anthony D. Thomas said in a statement emailed to NewsOne. “What does it say when a person can shoot and kill an unarmed mother in the presence of her young children, and not be immediately taken into custody, questioned, and charged? We will remain vigilant in seeking justice for AJ and other people of color, like Ralph Yarl, who simply knocked on a door and was met with the barrel of a gun. We must eradicate laws like Stand Your Ground that only contribute to the lawlessness of our country and the disproportionate maiming and killing of people of color. This is an important step in a necessary journey to justice for AJ.”
Social justice advocates along with Owens’ family and legal team have demanded Lorincz be charged with murder.
Lorincz was arrested more than 96 hours after she killed Owens. Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods attributed the delay to Florida being a “stand your ground” state with a law that affords citizens the legal right to defend themselves with lethal force.
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