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Ocala funeral service for AJ Owens includes eulogy by Rev. Al Sharpton

Ajike Shantrell Owens.
Family photo
Attorney Anthony Thomas
Ajike Shantrell Owens.

The funeral service is Monday morning for Ajike "AJ" Owens, the 35-year-old Black mother of four who was fatally shot through a closed door by her white neighbor south of Ocala.

The service was scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. at Meadowbrook Church in Ocala. The service would also be streamed live on YouTube and should be accessibleon the "Justice for AJ Owens" website.

The Rev. Al Sharpton, civil rights activist and MSNBC host, was set to deliver a eulogy.

Meanwhile, the family has a petition asking the state attorney to increase the charge against the shooting suspect, 58-year-old Susan Lorincz, from manslaughter to second-degree murder.

Owens’ death on June 3 gained national attention as the Marion County Sheriff's Office took four days to make an arrest. The sheriff said he had to rule out a defense under Florida's Stand Your Ground law.

The investigation showed that Lorincz had a history of confrontation with Owens' children and would call them racial slurs.

The Sheriff's Office says Owens went to her door after Lorincz threw a roller skate at one of the boys.

Lorincz remained in the Marion County Jail Monday morning, with bail set at $154,000.

Joe Byrnes came to WMFE/WMFV from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.
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