Family seeks answers in nightclub killing

20-year-old shot outside Northside club Saturday night

Darrell Carswell
Darrell Carswell

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A grieving family is asking the public's help in finding the person who shot and killed their 20-year-old son.

The shooting happened at Celebrity's Cafe in the 5000 block of Soutel Drive late Saturday night. Darrell Carswell died a short time later at a hospital.

Carswell's family wants to know why he was killed in the club parking lot about 10:30 p.m. They believe someone out there knows something, and their hope is that person will come forward.

"About 10 or 15 minutes after he had left from the house, we got the call that he had been shot," said Dionne Harrison, Carswell's mother. "He had only been gone for like 10 or 15 minutes."

"My brother was strong," said Jasmine Carswell, the victim's sister. "Ain't nobody going to understand my pain and what I'm going through. My brother is gone. I can't believe this."


Darrell Carswell's family says he was only there that night to pick up his cousins after a party at the club. Authorities say several people were outside when the shooting happened. Family members say they've heard very little about the moments leading up to his death.

"We don't know if there was any kind of confrontation, any words spoke," said Margaret Merchant, Darrell's aunt. "We haven't gotten any information from anybody. But that's what we need. We need somebody to come forward."

Channel 4 crime analyst Ken Jefferson says people should put themselves in the victim's family's shoes.

"The people who try to keep quiet about things like this are not directly affected," he said. "It's not their family members' life, a friend of theirs. If they know information, they figure, 'Well, let the police figure it out themselves.'"

Darrell's loved ones describe him as a person who could make anybody smile. They said he liked to play sports and his nickname was "fun fun." His family is asking those who know something to do the right thing. They say the worst part is not knowing.

"I have three sons. Now I'm down to two sons," Harrison said. "If they care about my son the way they say they do, then somebody will come forth and say, 'Hey, talk to the (Jacksonville) Sheriff's Office, talk to the detectives that's over the case."

City, state and police officials say Celebrity's Cafe is in compliance with all orders.

Anyone with any information about the fatal shooting is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.