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Orange Park man, 41, dies after Christmas Eve shooting

Neighbors say they heard arguing, fighting before gunshots rang out

ORANGE PARK, Fla. – An Orange Park man shot on Christmas Eve in the Floyd Circle area has died of his injuries, according to the Orange Park Police Department.

Kendrick Lenard Walker, 41, was taken to Orange Park Medical Center about 8 p.m. Monday after authorities took a call about shots fired along Floyd Circle off Gano Avenue. He did not survive.

Detectives, who are investigating the case as a murder, learned that Walker was shot while leaving the area in a vehicle. No information about a potential suspect or motive was immediately released.

Neighbors told News4Jax that before they heard the gunshots, they heard people in the street arguing and fighting. One neighbor said he heard someone yell, 'They got a gun!' Then he heard a single gunshot in front of his home, then 2 minutes later, another gunshot further up the street. 

Walker lived on the next block over with his mother, and other relatives live on the same street. A family member who asked not to be identified said Walker was his mother's only child.

“The family is taking it very hard right now," the relative said. "We want justice. We want whoever did this to Kendrick to come forward."

Police said they believe the shooting was an isolated incident, noting that they do not suspect there are any lingering safety concerns for those living in the area.

Neighbors said they heard and saw the commotion Monday night before the shooting.

"There (were) definitely fights going on out here with numbers of people," neighbor Nathan Vangorder said. "Then we heard, 'I got a gun.' Then we heard a shot, then another shot from down the street."

Another neighbor who didn't want his name used said bullets struck his house. "I came outside on my patio and looked up, and there a bullet hole through my patio."

Neighbor Leonard Jones said he got along with Walker.

“We would hang out and socialize," Jones said. "I have a running lawn mower I would let him use to cut his mother’s yard."

"It’s scary," Vangorder said. "We’re lucky no one got hurt from our family or their family. They‘re good people."

News4Jax learned Walker was arrested several times over the last 20 years, but police said that's not relevant to this case.

"We are aware of the victim’s criminal history, but that makes him no less a victim here, and the OPPD will do everything we can to bring a positive resolution to this case," Sgt. Cody Monroe said.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact the Orange Park Police Department at 904-264-5555 or First Coast Crime Stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.

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