Murder victim’s aunt ‘frustrated’ by lack of arrest
Today marks a year since two men were gunned down in a house on Dawkins Street, and the aunt of one victim says she’s frustrated police haven’t made an arrest.
“I want this homicide solved,” Towanda Jackson said Monday. “I want someone held accountable.”
Jackson’s nephew, 22-year-old Paul Anthony Noel Jr. of 700 Morreene Road, died after shots were fired into a house at 1212 Dawkins St., off South Alston Avenue, about 9:12 p.m. Jan. 8. Noel was taken to Duke University Hospital, where he died a short time later.
A second man, Timothy Deangelo McGhee, 24, of 1212 Dawkins St., died at the scene.
No charges have been filed.
“I am frustrated with the manner in which this investigation has taken place, and have relayed these frustrations to the lead investigator,” Jackson said. “The investigation has passed through many hands. It seems like every time an investigator gets the case, they start back from square one.”
Jackson said “many people” came forward initially to talk to investigators.
Detectives said they were getting “a lot of misinformation, but I felt like they had enough to follow up on concrete leads,” she said. “They’re now waiting on phone records and this, that and the third.”
But police said Monday they continue to work hard to solve the case.
“This has been an open and active case since the day it happened,” Durham police spokeswoman Kammie Michael said in an email. “Investigators have leads in the case, but they still need more information to make a strong case and file charges.”
Michael said the department “is putting this case out there because we know that there are people who have information about [it] and we are hoping that they will call investigators and/or CrimeStoppers to provide that information.
“We understand that this situation is very difficult for the families of the victims and Investigator McMaster has been staying in contact with family members.”
Jackson said she’d like police to do another canvass of the neighborhood where the shooting happened and “put up posters that would regenerate interest in this case.”
She acknowledged that her nephew had an arrest record and “was not an angel. He did things that I was not aware of, and did things that I didn’t condone. But I never expected him to be cut down at such a young age.”
Jackson believes the intended target of the killing was McGhee and that the shootings were done by gang members. She said McGhee and her nephew was friends.
“It’s unfortunate that he didn’t make the best decisions with picking friends,” Jackson said. “And that, ultimately, is what cost him his life. He was at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
Jackson said her understanding is that McGhee was shot in the head when he opened the door of his house, and that Noel was standing behind him and was shot two or three times – once in the heart. She said she doesn’t know if it was a drive-by shooting or if the shooter or shooters were lying in wait.
But one thing Jackson knows is that her nephew’s death still hurts.
“He was actually like my first baby,” she said. “He was the first child that my brother brought home, so he was the first child that I assisted in raising. We had a closer relationship than the average nephew and aunt. He came to me for guidance whenever he was in need.”
Jackson said it’s important for these killings to be solved – not just to close two cases, but to protect the public.
“These people are out there, shooting at people’s home, and they’re a threat to everyday citizens,” she said. “It’s not safe for us in the city of Durham to have young gang-bangers walking around with guns, killing people.”
CrimeStoppers is offering a reward for information leading to an arrest in these slayings. Call Investigator McMaster at 560-4440, ext. 29320 or CrimeStoppers at 919-683-1200.