MCKEESPORT (KDKA) – Police found Eric Johnson Jr., 24, dead with a gunshot wound in a Jeep Grand Cherokee parked near Soles Street.
A man in the passenger’s seat was wounded and taken to the hospital.
Clyde Banks is Eric Johnson Jr.’s uncle.
“My daughter called me, they were all about to go out for his sister’s birthday. Somebody heard a shot, they went out and found him in the car,” Banks said.
He sings in the choir at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Mckeesport. On Sunday, the rest of the congregation heard the news about the shooting.
“The bottom line is kids have to realize on thing: you’re not perfect, but you are forgiven for the things you did. It’s in your past, it’s never too late,” Banks said.
Meanwhile, the sermon was delivered by a man who says he abandoned a life of crime after he found salvation.
“I worked hard for getting high, I worked hard for criminal activity, I worked hard for everything that dealt with the world,” said church member Ed Houston.
Houston is a three time convicted felon who at one time was wanted by Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers. But, after numerous arrests, lots of jail time and even homelessness, he changed his life.
He now wants others to know they can do the same.
“Anybody else can do it because I know I thought I would never get out of it. I’m as happy as I can be, I’m not the same person that I used to be,” Houston said.
Banks says the suspect in his nephew’s murder can also change his life. But first, he needs to surrender.
“I’d rather have a court convict me than God, because he could do some damage.”