Police investigate murder of teen

January 21, 2009 4:14:03 PM PST
Philadelphia police are still trying to track down a suspect in the murder of a 17-year-old Tuesday night.It happened in the 2100 block of North Newkirk.

After hearing multiple gunshots, a neighbor saw two men running away from a pocket park, an area that is flanked by a peace mural.

But there is no peace for those who loved 17-year-old Dwayne Canty, who was gunned down there last night.

"I heard four gunshots, maybe more than that," said neighbor Steven Pleasant.

Earlier in the night Canty had picked up his paycheck from work and cashed it. He may have had that money on him when he was shot just a few doors from his house.

His mother wants those who killed him to know what kind of young man they took.

"They took the best person in the world," said Nikisha Ramsey. "He would never, ever hurt nobody. All he wanted to do was take care of his family, and be happy. That's all he wanted."

She adds, Dwayne was in a good mood that day. He had just watched the inauguration of Barack Obama, and was feeling upbeat.

That night, Canty had left his family's home, headed for a nearby KFC to pick up dinner for his mother. Police think he was the victim of armed robbers.

"It's a senseless killing, it's a cold-hearted killing. Here we have a 17-year-old male. He's never been in any trouble with police, he was getting his G.E.D," said Capt. James Clark of the Philadelphia Police. "Once he graduated his G.E.D. program, he planned to go into the Navy.

Neighbor Zakia Lawrence says Canty stayed off the streets. His focus was a job at a fast-food restaurant in Montgomery County.

"He works with my son at McDonald's up on Ridge Pike, and he was inspiring my son because he was getting a lot of hours, he wanted to work," Lawrence said.

Police are asking for the public's help. If you have any information, contact the Philadelphia Police Department's Homicide Division.

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