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MIAMI(CBSMiami) — A grieving mother and father are asking for the community’s help after their 21-year-old son was shot and killed recently in Model City.

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“Well to me he was my first born child,” said Kendrell Jackson, the mother of 21-year-old Matthew Jackson, who Miami Police say was shot multiple times and whose body was discovered in an alley on August 31st at 650 N.W. 50th St.

Jackson shed tears as she told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench, “That’s a pill no parent should swallow and I still can’t swallow it. He was everything to me.”

Her voice broke as she said, “No child is perfect, but” and then she looked down at a table in silence.

Jackson spoke during a family appeal at Miami Police headquarters with Matthew Jackson’s father, Johnnie Mathis Jr.

Kendrell Jackson said, “He just turned 21 and 21 days after his 21st birthday to be killed like this, how am I supposed to take that? How is his family supposed to take that?”

“We have a very big family and he was loved by a lot of people and he was well known,”
she said. “For people just to sit there and be quiet, it irks me. He had his ups and downs but he was always there for other people. Somebody out there on the streets knows what happened.”

She said, “I need somebody out there on the street like somebody who was with him who knows something or saw something or heard something to come forward. We need people to speak up and come forward.”

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Johnnie Mathis Jr. told D’Oench, “To lose your first born child there are no words to express how we feel. That’s why we want people in the community to come forward with information.”

Records show Jackson had been arrested before for loitering in 2012, grand theft in 2013 and robbery sudden snatch in 2014. Police are not saying if there’s a connection to any previous incidents or if Jackson had any enemies.

Mathis said, “he wasn’t a bad kid. He was a good kid. He had his ups and downs.”

Jackson’s parents said he was trying to finish up classes at Miami Northwestern Sr. High School and had hoped to go to college to pursue a career in music. He was the oldest of three children.

The lead homicide detective in the case, Ezra Washington, also made an appeal for the community to help. “This is our own community,” he said. “And we have take care of our community.”

“We do have some leads,” he said. “He was with someone but it’s not clear if was just a witness or the offender. You don’t just walk up to someone and shoot someone that many times. It had to be someone who he was comfortable with.”

Washington said police so far do not have a motive for the shooting or a description of the shooter or shooters.

Anyone with information that can help Miami Police should call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS (8477).

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There’s a reward of up to $3,000.

Peter D'Oench