Services Held For Victims; Reward Offered In Case

GREENVILLE NC -- Services have been for the two victims in Tuesday morning's drive-by shooting in downtown Greenville. This as police say there's a $10,000 reward for the arrest of their suspected killer.

Landon Blackley, an ECU student, and Andrew Kirby, a downtown restaurant manager, were gunned down in front of The Other Place nightclub on East 5th Street.

Visitation for Blackley was held Thursday night in Oxford. Memorial services will be held at 2 p.m. Friday at the Oxford United Methodist Church.

Kirby was laid to rest Thursday in his hometown of Kenly. His funeral was at 7 p.m. Thursday at Family Life Center in Kenly. A graveside service will be held Friday at 10 a.m. at Kenly Cemetery.

The ECU Student Government Association, according to its twitter page, is planning an anti-violence march and candlelight vigil Tuesday.

Greenville police continue to search for James "L.J." Richardson, who is wanted for the double murder. There is now a $10,000 reward for information leading to his capture.

Police Thursday also alerted media outlets in two states for help in locating the suspect. They say Richardson has family and friends in Charlotte, Durham, Greensboro, Raleigh and in Atlanta.

Autopsy Released

An autopsy shows that two Greenville men, shot outside a downtown bar, both died from gunshots to the chest.

The medical examiner's office tells WITN News that Andrew Kirby was shot in the chest and in the arm, while Landon Blackley was shot in the chest.

The two were killed outside The Other Place Nightclub on East 5th Street when a fight spilled out into the street. Police say Blackley and Kirby were not involved in that fight and were innocent bystanders.

Police continue to search for James "L.J." Richardson, who is wanted for the two murders.

Blackley, a native of Oxford, would have been a senior at ECU this fall, while Kirby was a manager at Michaelangelo's Pizza, that's right across the street from where the shooting happened.

Previous Story

Police continue to search for James Richardson, who is suspected in the shooting that claimed the lives of an East Carolina University student and a downtown Greenville restaurant manager.

That shooting happened outside a downtown bar early Tuesday morning.

Greenville police identified the student as 21-year-old Landon Blackley, a rising senior at ECU. The other victim, Andrew Kirby, was a manager at Michaelangelo's Pizza on East 5th Street.

An obituary for Kirby says his funeral will be at 7 p.m. Thursday at Family Life Center in Kenly. A graveside service will be held Friday at 10 a.m. at Kenly Cemetery.

Kaitlin Riggs saw Kirby right before the shooting.

"It's very tragic what happened to Kirby," she said. "He's the last person in the world to deserve any of this. I remember seeing him smile right before he left."

WITN does not have information yet regarding services for Blackley.

Danielle Pittman attends ECU with Blackley.

"A couple of guys who had been at the club were completely in shock and had to tell us about the shooting they'd just seen," she said. "They were all shaken up."

Police say they are looking for James E. Richardson as the shooter. Police say the 32-year-old was arrested last year for worthless checks.

His vehicle was found around noon Tuesday on McDowell Street.

Detectives say there could be the possibility of other suspects.

Jeff Deering, owner of Michaelangelo's, says Kirby worked for him for the past nine years, and had begun managing the Fifth Street restaurant in February. Prior to that the 28-year-old Kirby managed the Michelangelo's on Evans Street.

Greenville police Corporal Kip Gaskins says a fight at the intersection of Fifth and Reade Streets led to the shooting around closing time for the bars, which is about 2 a.m.

Both shooting victims were taken to Pitt County Memorial Hospital.

Police say one victim died shortly after the shooting. The second victim died around 6 a.m.

Tuesday morning police had blocked off part of Fifth Street as part of their crime scene investigation, but have since reopened the street to traffic.

Gaskins says detectives think the victims were innocent bystanders who had nothing to do with the fight.

WITN has confirmed Richardson played basketball for J.H. Rose High School in Greenville in the mid-90s.

Greenville police confirm Richardson played basketball after high school.

Lenoir Community College confirms a James Richardson played for the Lancers in 1997 and 1998.

Online records show a Richardson who attended Lenoir Community College then playing for Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania and teams overseas, before playing for the Albany Patroons in New York in 2005-2006.

Click here to listen to 911 tapes from the shooting.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Look people on Jul 27, 2009 at 05:53 PM
    When I first moved back and interviewed for my first job. One of the interviewers(a white manager) asked me why I moved back here and this was in the 90's and said the crime is not bad like in Durham and he responded with ask the woman who son has just gotten killed. I have been downtown a couple of time even after the shootings and there were many whites and blacks. The whites looked more thuggish than the blacks. Also the girls(black and white)had on dresses and shorts up to their behinds. Now we make this into a racial debate, but we know full well it is not. So before you start pointing fingers go downtown yourself and tell the truth about all races.
  • by Look people on Jul 27, 2009 at 04:57 PM
    I went to NCCU back in the 90's. It was no different. We had a murder on campus my first weekend there. I still stayed and finish my degree. Crime is being committed everywhere at anytime. Children are going to party when they leave home and some them get into situations and some of them are lucky to be alive. This is the worst thing that could happen when someone lose their lives. It has nothing to do with race. I am black and would not think of hurting anyone in anyway. And I know some there are alot of that feel the same way. All of us get mad that is why TAD we have serial killings and other murders. And by the way TAD serial killings are not random. It has been happening just like these crimes around these towns for centuries. But judging people and saying mean things on site makes you just as worst as the person who pull the trigger.
  • by Anonymous on Jul 7, 2009 at 03:58 PM
    NCSU grad, Schools have had to be dumbed down so everyone could pass...
  • by OutsideLookingIn Location: Vanceboro on Jul 7, 2009 at 03:50 PM
    Posted by: NYY on Jul 6, 2009 at 03:51 PM Why are southerners, especially people from NC so racist? GROW UP! Because we are suffering from crime committed by ethnics, blacks, hispanics, etc..., in the daytime, in the nighttime, in our shopping malls, to our Mothers, Fathers, daughters, sons, etc...without provocation. That's why...end of line.
  • by Rich Location: Greenville on Jul 7, 2009 at 05:05 AM
    NCSU Grad, who caused you to be stereotyped when you were growing up? Black male thugs, that's who. It is like a broken record around here. Greenville needs you badly if you are a community advocate because the advocates for the black community here only point out the negatives on a day to day basis so they can keep their power base.
  • by voter Location: nc on Jul 6, 2009 at 06:06 PM
    NYY; why do yankees feel the need to stick their nose in everyones business???
  • by Cactus Location: Strabane on Jul 6, 2009 at 03:46 PM
    NYY, you miss the point, if wanting crime off the street is racist, then so be it. I wonder if Ma and the SCLC expect to get the reward?
  • by NYY on Jul 6, 2009 at 12:51 PM
    Why are southerners, especially people from NC so racist? GROW UP!
  • by Sam Location: Williamston on Jul 6, 2009 at 12:08 PM
    As a very proud ECU alum, I am very disturbed, angry, and upset over this. Me and my wife have our thoughts and prayers going out to the families and friends of the victims and to really the rest of the city of Greenville and Pirate Nation. ECU has nothing to do with this, but with thugs like this, it makes Greenville and ECU look worse than what it really is. People like these thug punks on the street I say should be off using some that trigger-happy personality and take it to Iraq or Afghanistan and start shooting them. This might sound cold-hearted, but the individual who did the shooting deserves the death penalty, and I personally would have wished that the shooter would have had himself and his gun thrown over the Greene Street Bridge. Greenville has NO ROOM for these lowlifes. I am for the death penalty in this case. If the death penalty comes out, justice would be served and Greenville would be safer. Lavon, you sound like you are friends or are related with this punk.
  • by Black NCSU grad Location: Raleigh on Jul 6, 2009 at 11:48 AM
    Not once, if you read with your eyes and not with your racial emotions, did I condone the actions of the accused. I recall me saying "MURDER IS MURDER!" Regardless if the trigger finger is brown, white, blue or purple, the color of the finger should not determine the importance or severity of the crime. And as far as "community organizer", I call myself a community advocate! And who do you think are the main people attempting to close every door I try to open to the youth in the community? You are so quick to tell us to "raise our children w/sorry parents" but constantly provide inadequate educational resources in CERTAIN neighborhoods. Is this not what one needs in their quest of becoming a productive member of society? I too, HBCU, endured a lack of concern from my white teachers in school, and I was normally the ONLY black in my "AG" classes. Shouldn't that have been sufficient in proving I wasn't a bad person? Regardless of success, negativity ALWAYS stick out most in their minds!!

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