Lakeland man was shot and killed - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lakeland man was shot and killed

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By Robin Jedlicka - bio | email

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - The fifth murder in the town in less than a year has the community outraged and saying the violence has to stop.

Around 10:20 Thursday night, a single gun shot killed twenty-two year old Robert Anthony Croft. After knocking on doors for help, Croft collapsed and died on Talley Avenue, near 8th street.

"I want my baby back, and he'll never be back. I want the man that did this-- I want him to pay for it," said the victim's mother, Antoinette Brown.

Witnesses say Croft had been riding in a car with at least one other person before he was shot.

"The victim was shot one time in the chest. We did find one shell casing, that landed on 8th Street, to a .380 caliber," said Lakeland Police Chief Robbie Grantham.

Croft was alive when police arrived, but died soon after being transported to Louis Smith Hospital.

Family members came together to mourn the loss of their loved one who recently became a father.

"Oh man, he loves that baby. It looks just like him-- it's his pride and joy," Antoinette Brown said.

The response to the murder is both sadness and outrage. The community is shaken by last night's shooting. This is the small town of Lakeland's fifth murder in less than a year.

"I don't know who to blame," said Neighbor Billy Davis. "Something needs to be done because it's getting bad."

The family's message to the killer is clear. He should, "Turn himself in. Pay for what he did," said Croft's mother.

GBI agents have questioned several people, but they have not made any arrests.

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