KILLONA, La. (WGNO) — Using the power of prayer, spiritual leaders in St. Charles Parish are pleading for peace.
“Our hope for this community is a holistic healing, mind, body and spirit. That’s what we want for this community, to be able to heal and come together again in the spirit of unity and peace,” said Clarence Mollarie, President of the Second District Missionary Baptist Association of Louisiana Incorporated.
Several pastors came together for a prayer service outside of Scott’s convenience store in Killona, where five people were shot last week. 29-year-old Darzil “Zelly” Washington was killed in the shooting.
“It’s been real, real, real hard. You know, I get my days and my moments, you know, I got good days, I got bad days. You know, when I get a moment by myself I normally break down,” said Frederic Downing, Zelly’s dad.
The violence in St. Charles Parish didn’t stop in Killona. Early Monday morning, 66-year-old Lionel Fiffie was shot and killed on Smith Street in Hahnville. The St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office arrested 21-year-old Laron Toney Jr. for the murder. However, the suspects behind Washington’s murder remain at large.
“I ain’t never seen this in my life. Not in this area here. I hope it can stop somewhere, you know, but this generation is a whole different generation, you know? No respect for the elders, no respect for no one,” said Downing.
In hopes of inspiring positive change in the community, the pastors created a “unity circle” in the very spot where Washington was killed. Holding hands and bowing heads, the pastors prayed over Washington’s loved ones and the St. Charles Parish community.
We reached out to the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office about the recent violence in the area.
They provided us with this statement that reads in part:
“Any violence is tragic. One of the number one goals of the men and women of the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office is to protect life. We do our best with every patrol assignment, investigation, and any other function within the sheriff’s office to combat crime. We plead with our citizens, let’s work together to curve violent situations to peaceful resolutions and take violent criminals to justice.”
Deputies are asking anyone with any information on last week’s shooting in Killona to come forward and they say that you can remain anonymous.