The 35-year-old mother of fourin Florida after a dispute with a neighbor is set to be laid to rest on Monday, lawyers for the family said Wednesday.
Ajike Owens, a single mother affectionately known as AJ, was killed on Friday in Ocala, a city about 80 miles north of Orlando. Officers on Tuesday, 58, in connection with Owens’ death. She was taken into custody on charges of manslaughter with a firearm, culpable negligence, battery and two counts of assault, Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods said in a statement.
Owens and Lorincz had been engaged in a 2½-year dispute, Woods said. Deputies have responded about a half dozen times since January 2021 to calls concerning the ongoing “neighborhood feud.” Lorincz was upset because Owens’ children played in a field close to her home.
On the day of the deadly shooting, the children were playing in the field, according to the incident report. Lorincz allegedly threw a roller skate at Owens’ 10-year-old son that hit him in his toe. Lorincz is also accused of swinging an umbrella at the boy and his older brother.
“Owens approached Lorincz’s home, knocked on the door multiple times, and demanded that Lorincz come outside,” the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said. “Lorincz then fired one shot through the door, striking Owens in her upper chest. At the time she was shot, Owens’ 10-year-old son was standing beside her.”
Ben Crump, an attorney representing Owens’ family, said it was a relief to tell Owens’ children of the arrest.
“Today we get to share with her children and tried to make sure they understand that this senseless act of violence that killed their mother before their eyes was not their fault,” Crump said.
Police on Monday said they had held off on the arrest while they determined what role the state’s “stand your ground” laws might have played in the shooting.
Pamala Dias, Owens’ mother,.
“She had no weapon, she posed no imminent threat to anyone,” Dias said at a press conference Monday.
Dias also organized a GoFundMe to help cover funeral costs and support Owens’ four children. In the GoFundMe, Dias commemorated her daughter as someone with an infectious personality and a “smile that would light up the room.”
“But most of all, she was known for how much she loved and absolutely lived for her four children,” Dias wrote. “To say she loved her children unconditionally is an understatement.”
Before her death, Owens worked as a manager in the hospitality industry, according to the GoFundMe. She also helped out as a “Team Mom” for her children’s football and cheerleading teams.
“After being a devoted mother, she was a devoted friend that took friendships to heart,” Dias wrote. “There wasn’t anything that she wouldn’t do for those near and dear to her heart. She often would give to other single mothers that were in similar situations that she’d been in.”
She’ll be eulogized at her funeral by Rev. Al Sharpton, according to Crump.