Family calls for justice in fatal Sunset Cliffs shooting


SAN DIEGO – Family and friends gathered Tuesday night at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park to replace flowers that were no longer at the spot where Akili Cobbs was shot to death this weekend while sitting in a car.

Akili Cobbs was shot to death this weekend while sitting in a car near Sunset Cliffs Natural Park. (Cobbs family)

“I never thought I’d be on this side of him,” Cobbs’ brother Marcelous Johnson said. “But it’s true what they say, you can wake up and the nightmare will be on your doorstep.”

At about 11:30 p.m. Sunday, San Diego police received multiple reports of shots fired near the 4500 block of Ladera Street and someone yelling for help. When officers arrived, they found Cobbs suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Officers administered first aid but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

No suspects in the case have been identified, and the motive for the slaying remains unclear.

Family friend Christine Evans told FOX 5 she spent about $90 on flowers in remembrance of Cobbs and brought them to the site Monday night around 7 p.m. When she returned Tuesday, she said they were gone.

“It’s just not right,” Evans said. “His family deserves to mourn.”

This time, loved ones hope the flowers brought Tuesday will remain in their rightful place to honor Cobbs.

“He was a great person and I just feel like a person gone too soon,” said Robert Johnson Jr., another brother of Cobbs.

Documents show Cobbs has a long criminal history dating back more than a decade. But his family says he still deserves respect.

“Regardless of who he was, everybody deserves respect,” another family friend said. “He deserved that. He didn’t deserve to go the way that he did.”

In the meantime, the family wants to make sure something like this doesn’t happen again. They’re calling on the community and officials to help make the park safer, possibly with lighting and a regularly locked gate.

While police continue to search for Cobbs’ killer, his brother says he won’t quit until there’s justice.

“Justice for him, this is the only way it’s going to work,” Marcelous Johnson said. “That’s the only way I’m going to rest until I ain’t. Like I said, it’s a long road”

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