The mother and girlfriend of a man killed in a south-side shooting Saturday said they have forgiven his killer and ask that anyone with information come forward.
Michael James, 39, was shot shortly before 1 a.m. outside a Veterans of Foreign Wars club at 2308 S. Park Ave., near East 33rd Street, Tucson police said. No further information was released.
“A detective told me that Michael was standing outside smoking a cigarette and he was shot once,” said his mother, Pamela Scott, 55, who lives in Sacramento, Calif. “I don’t understand it. ... I am very sad and hurt. I only had two sons, and both of them died after being shot.”
She said her youngest son died at age 26 when he was shot coming out of a store in Sacramento.
Now Scott said she is making funeral arrangements to bury her oldest son in Los Angeles, where their relatives live.
Scott, a bus driver, said she moved to Sacramento when her sons were young because she wanted to take them away from gangs in Compton.
Violence still claimed their lives, she said. “Michael was very close to his brother, and he took his death very hard,” said Scott, adding that he met his girlfriend, LaQuenna Lewis, 31, in 2009 and both moved to Tucson in 2012 where she has family.
“Michael was an outgoing, happy, sociable person. He should have been a comedian,” said Scott, adding that her son worked at the Target Distribution Center.
He and Lewis have two sons, and Lewis is expecting their third boy soon.
“All I know is that he went to the VFW with a friend for a beer,” Lewis said. “He was my backbone, and he is the one who taught me to love unconditionally and forgive. He was a beautiful person with a beautiful spirit.”
“The person who did this needs to do the right thing and come forward. They need to find peace within their soul. I forgive this person. I have to forgive them in order to go on with my life. That is what the Bible tells you,” Scott said.
“We love you and we forgive you. I would like to tell the person this to their face. This will be closure for me,” said Lewis.
Anyone with information is asked to call 911 or 88-CRIME.