LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Family and community came together for a balloon release Wednesday evening to mourn, remember and reflect on the life of Khalila Martindale Jr.

He was shot and killed Tuesday morning on Oak Street in Little Rock.

A sea of red flooded the street to honor the blood shed by Martindale Jr. 

“He didn’t have any enemies. That’s why it was so hard for us to believe that somebody would murder him,” the victim’s aunt, Rokenya Boykin said. 

Little Rock police have arrested three people in connection to the shooting.

The suspects, 21-year-old Evelyn Alexander, 24-year-old Eric Davis, and 23-year-old Marqiuis Smith have all been charged with capital murder.

“I wish they would let us sit down with them so we can just ask them why,” said Boykin. 

A prayer was said by Rev. Bennie Johnson, the founder of the Arkansas Stop the Violence Movement. “We thank you for the life of brother Khalila Martindale, Lord God.”

“We want to set us a meeting with prosecutor Will Jones and tell him they need to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” Rev. Johnson said. 

On top of calling for full justice, Johnson is calling for the city to fix the 911 call system after he says a neighbor’s call looking to report the shooting went unanswered.

After being on hold and not speaking with anyone, Johnson says the neighbor drove to the 12th Street police station to notify police of the shooting.

“They could’ve got the paramedics and EMT’s here on time and could have saved him.”

We reached out to the city for comment on the 911 call center and were given this response. 

Our understanding is that an initial call to 911 was made at 10:48 a.m. followed by another at 10:55 a.m. The caller hung up both times prior to the calls being answered. In addition, a 911 call-taker called the number back at 10:52 a.m. but did not receive a response. Another call from the same number was received at 10:59 a.m., when a death was reported to the call-taker and first responders were dispatched to the scene.  At this time, we are in the process of reviewing the circumstances surrounding this matter.

Standing next to Johnson were two parents who know what Martindale’s mother is feeling all too well after losing a child to gun violence.

Earl Williams was one of those parents. 3 of his sons were killed. With each homicide, it brings a feeling that hits anytime another is gunned down.

“I’m so tired of this. I’m so tired of this. I’m so tired of this,” Williams said. 

As the balloons elevate in the sky together in honor of Martindale Jr., that’s what this grieving father wants to see in people, togetherness, so he doesn’t have to see another person killed.

“The only way we gone beat this monster in this town is us together.”

This homicide makes number 34 for the city of Little Rock this year.