By Robin Rieger
CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) - Community members chanted “stop the violence” and rallied against crime in Camden at the Life Celebration of slain grocery store owner 46-year-old Miguel Almonte on Thursday.
Devastated family members tearfully said their goodbyes at St Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Cramer Hill.
Three other men were wounded in the shooting at Bernard’s Grocery Monday night. In an exclusive phone interview, one of the survivors, who did not wish to be identified, describes what happened when two masked gunmen walked in.
“They came in and just started opening fire from the front to the back. They asked where the money was. That was it. Next thing you know I heard the shots,” he said.
The victim says he was hit multiple times in his arm.
“I pretty much went down and played dead.”
He says Almonte pleaded with the men. “’Please don’t shoot me.’ They didn’t have no sympathy, I don’t think.”
The murder and multiple shootings prompted activists to lash out at Mayor Dana Redd.
Redd met with State Attorney General Paula Dow Thursday morning. Dow disclosed little of their conversation at city hall as she left.
“Came down here to meet with the Mayor to assess the situation. It was a productive meeting,” said Dow.
She also met with the Camden County prosecutor Warren Faulk.
Mayor Redd had little to say as she left City Hall.
“We’re hoping for additional assistance,” said Redd.