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Ajike “A.J.” Owens' mother says if her daughter fatally shot Susan Lorincz, things would be different

The latest episode of “REVOLT Black News Weekly” was emotionally charged as it included global news anchor Mara S. Campo conducting a one-on-one interview with Pamela Dias, the mother of Ajike “A.J.” Owens.

  /  07.03.2023

The latest episode of “REVOLT Black News Weekly” was emotionally charged as it included global news anchor Mara S. Campo conducting a one-on-one interview with Pamela Dias, the mother of Ajike “A.J.” Owens. It was Owens, a Black mother, who was shot and killed by her neighbor named Susan Lorincz after a dispute with her children. Also discussed on Friday’s (June 30) episode was missing Black children in Cleveland, sexual freedom leading to an increase in sexually transmitted diseases, and an interview with actor and comedian Anthony Anderson and his mother, who both star in a new reality TV show.

When RBN caught up with Dias, she just learned that her daughter’s killer would be getting charged with manslaughter, not murder. “It was heartbreaking,” she said. “I was very disappointed, sad, angry, disgusted.” She added, “My gut just tells me that it just all boils down to race…because Ajika was a Black woman. I don’t understand how it could not be murder 2 with all the evidence that we have. And so my conclusion is we have a white shooter and Black victim. Simple as that.”

Owens’ neighbor was allegedly terrorizing neighborhood Black children and she reportedly called them the N-word and “slave.” When Owens went to confront her, Lorincz shot through a closed door, killing the mother of four right in front of her son. According the local DA, a murder charge would have required evidence of a depraved mind and “hatred, spite, ill will or evil intent toward the victim.” Yet Lorincz, who was known as the local racist Karen, would not be arrested for four days. Unfortunately, we’ve heard these types of stories again and again.

“I wholeheartedly believe that if my daughter, being a Black woman, shot Susan, a white woman, the narrative would be completely different,” said Dias, who is now raising her four grandchildren. “She would have been arrested immediately and it would be murder 2, undoubtedly.”

Another trending story RBN addressed was missing children in Cleveland. On June 17, Sherice Snowden’s teen son, Keshaun Williams, went missing. When she filed a police report, she became one of dozens of families in the area looking for their kids. Between May 2 and May 16, 27 children went missing in the Cleveland area. That’s half of all open cases in just a two-week period. “That is a big surge in such a condenses time frame,” said activist Nina Turner, a former Ohio state senator. “It’s definitely something that the community at larger, whether it’s law enforcement or just the general community, should be very concerned about. Cleveland is a majority African-American city, so most of the children are African-American.”

More Cleveland teens have gone missing since that two-week period. Sherice Snowden continues to look for her child and recently convinced police to issue an Amber Alert for him. You have to wonder if these cases would be getting more national attention if it were white kids missing. “Many times a missing child of color is classified as a runaway when they disappear,” said Natalie Wilson, co-founder of the Black and Missing Foundation. “If you’re classified as a runaway, you do not receive the amber alert or any type of media coverage at all, so the community isn’t aware.” Even if a child leaves home voluntarily, they still may be in danger. Pimps and pedophiles are just some of the dangers a runaway — or kidnapping them — may face out in the streets.

Another story that RBN investigated was what’s causing the rise in sexually transmitted diseases in Black people. In the 90s, safe sex was preached like gospel since people were terrorized by the fear of HIV and AIDS. But now, HIV is manageable, and that lack of fearing may be leading to rise in STDs throughout the Black community. They are at an all-time high, climbing for six years in a row to 2.6 million in 2019 and the CDC says the epidemic is showing no signs of slowing.

“In my 12 years of being a doctor [I have] steadily been seeing a rise in sexually transmitted infections, especially in communities of color,” said Dr. Heater Irobund. “And especially within the last five years, we’ve seen rises in all of the STDs and it’s concerning.” For example, from 2020 to 2021, gonorrhea and chlamydia increased 4 percent. Even, syphilis is back, surging 32 percent in one year after being almost wiped out in the 1990s. STD rates in the Black community are five to eight times higher than in white communities. Moreover, the Black community has the highest rates of HIV infections with Black women making up the majority of new infections among women. Sure there’s more sexual freedom and recreational drugs out there, but it’s time to wrap it back up, folks.

On a lighter note, RBN caught up with Anthony Anderson and his Mama Doris, who are exploring Europe with their own unique perspectives on their new E! show “Trippin’ With Anthony Anderson and Mama Doris.” Be sure to watch new episodes of “REVOLT Black News Weekly” every Friday at 5 p.m. ET via REVOLT’s app.

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