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Mother seeks answers 14 years after son murdered in Detroit

Gavin Early was shot, killed in Detroit on June 25, 2006

DETROIT – A mother is grieving the loss of her 23-year-old son more than 14 years after he was murdered in Detroit -- and police are still trying to solve the case.

Gavin Early’s mother, Linda Berry, last saw him on June 25, 2006 when he said goodbye before heading out for a car ride with his brother to meet friends.

Berry says her oldest son Bryson had fixed up an old car and he and Gavin were driving it that night to meet their friends Downtown.

When the two brothers reached the corner of Chicago Boulevard and Woodward Avenue, an axle broke and the car broke down. Their friends decided to drive to their location to wait with them for the tow truck.

Gavin and Bryson were sitting in their friends’ car at the corner when Bryson noticed someone walking out of the trees and toward the vehicle, Linda Berry said. Bryson reportedly told his friend to drive away, and just when he did, the unknown man fired shots at the vehicle.

Gavin, who was sitting in the back seat, was struck by a bullet in the chest. He was taken to the hospital and died from his injuries.

“(They) told me they tried, but they couldn’t save him,” Linda Berry said. “It has just always haunted me. Why did that guy have to shoot? They were driving away, why did he have to do that?”

Detroit police are still investigating the shooting, offering $14,000 for information leading to the arrest of the suspect in question.

Officials say there doesn’t appear to be a motive for the shooting, other than to rob the group.

The unknown shooter, who is still at large, is described as a man standing 5 feet, 8 inches tall with a medium complexion and wore a type of ponytail, police said.

A sketch of the suspect can be seen below.

A sketch of the shooter suspected of killing Gavin Early on June 25, 2006.
A sketch of the shooter suspected of killing Gavin Early on June 25, 2006. (WDIV)

Police are asking anyone who was in the area of Chicago Boulevard and Woodward Avenue on the night of June 25, 2006 to contact them with any helpful information.

Anyone can anonymously share information by contacting Crime Stoppers at 1-800-Speak Up.

Meanwhile, Linda Berry says she constantly wonders how Gavin’s life would have turned out if this never happened. She often talks about his artwork and his dream of running a body shop someday.

Now, Linda Berry says it is her dream to find out who murdered her son that night 14 years ago.


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