Homicide victim called ‘sweet,’ ‘lovable’

Published 10:14 pm Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Family and friends remembered the city’s first homicide victim of 2013 as sweet and lovable on Wednesday.

Carlton “CJ” Holland Jr., 31, was pronounced dead at 3:55 a.m. Jan. 1 at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. He had been shot in the upper chest area in the 400 block of Linden Avenue, a city spokeswoman said.


“He was lovable,” said Teesha Holland, the victim’s first cousin. “Everybody loved him. He was a people person.”

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Carlton Holland had been at what city spokeswoman Diana Klink termed a “social gathering” in the 400 block of Linden Avenue, just south of the railroad tracks that cut across the road.

Police received a call for shots fired about 3:07 a.m. Officers did not find the victim at the scene but were told he was being transported from the scene in a van headed to the hospital.

Emergency medical personnel met the van on nearby Wellons Street and took Holland to the Norfolk hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Two neighbors said separately on Wednesday there were four gunshots in quick succession.

“I heard the hollering and stuff that the boy had been shot,” said one neighbor who did not want to be identified. She said she got on the floor of her bedroom and did not get up until she heard police arrive.

“It was loud; that’s why I went on the floor and called police,” she said.

Another neighbor, Wanda Perkins, said she thought of Holland as a son, because he was a good friend of her own son. She last talked to him on New Year’s Eve and invited him for dinner on New Year’s Day. He said he would be there after hearing the menu, which included black-eyed peas for good luck in the new year.

“He said, ‘That’s a wrap,’” Perkins said. “There’s nothing bad I can say about him.”

The shooting happened next door to her house, though it is unclear who was hosting the party.

“I was scared to get up,” she said, adding that she also heard four shots. “Somebody said ‘CJ got shot.’ My heart just dropped.”

Perkins said there was never any reason to be mad at Holland, and even if there were a disagreement, there was no need to shoot him.

“As small as he was, all you had to do was push him,” she said. “He wasn’t a bad person.”

Teesha Holland said her cousin wrote poetry and “could make anybody laugh.” She used to joke she would open a comedy club and make him the star act.

“That was messed up, what they did to him,” she said. “They hurt my family to the core.”