Durand Robinson, a key organizer of Black Gay Pride, was instrumental in getting hip hop sensation Nicki Minaj to play at last year’s Labor Day Weekend event. He was killed Aug. 25.
Atlanta Police officials now say they have a “person of interest” in the case. They are also seeking a witness who at one time was cooperating with law enforcement but then disappeared.
“We do have person of interest but are withholding the name at this time,” said APD spokesperson Sgt. Curtis Davenport. “No other information will be released at this time. Investigators are diligently working the case.”
WSB-TV reported Dec. 23 that police were seeking a witness in the case as well. Wynter Robinson confirmed this.
“We’re looking for one witness who was cooperating at first but not now,” she said.
The Robinson family has added $2,500 to the Crime Stoppers reward money for information leading to the arrest of Durand Robinson’s killer. According to the Crime Stoppers website, the organizations awards up to $2,000 for tips leading to arrests.
Durand Robinson was shot and killed in the early morning hours of Aug. 25 in southwest Atlanta. He was found in the middle of Hadlock Street and police stated at the beginning of the investigation that Robinson may have been a victim of a carjacking. Major Keith Meadows also said shortly after the killing that it appeared Robinson knew his killer. No money was taken from Robinson’s Ford truck that was only driven a couple blocks away from where the shooting took place.
“All the cash was with him and the car was only driven two blocks,” Wynter Robinson said.
The police report of the killing noted people heard shouting outside before a gunshot went off.
A preliminary police report stated, “Residence at Hadlock Street SW called 911 at 0123 hours to report a person injured. Grady EMS and Fire Rescue units were already on the scene. The victim was deceased on scene by an apparent gunshot wound. Residence at Hadlock Street SW heard a commotion in the street followed by a single gunshot and the sound of a vehicle speeding off. The residence advised that when they looked out they saw the victim lying in the street and called 911.”
“Allegedly my father helped this person in the past,” said Wynter Robinson of the shooter. “It’s horrendous to me knowing that this person was helped by my father and knew who he was.
“My father was very non-violent. If it was just a random crime, he would have given the car over immediately. The fact there was shouting means he knew [the shooter],” she said.
This seems to back up what Major Meadows said about the investigation in September.
“There were other circumstances that led up to the ultimate shooting,” Meadows said then.
“This had nothing had to do with his sexual orientation. It might have had something to do with past relationships with people. Personal relationships,” he said.
The Atlanta Police Department LGBT Advisory Board is expected to receive an update on the investigation into Robinson’s death at its next meeting, Jan. 10 at 7 p.m. at Atlanta City Hall.
Wynter Robinson said the pain of her father’s death continues to reverberate throughout the community.
“He instilled great things in me. I’m sorry for everyone else,” she said.
“I always thought he’d die of a heart attack because he worked so hard. It’s unreal to me. It’s like shooting an angel — how can you kill Durand? He was shot in the heart. And that’s what he was known for — his heart.”
Top photo: Durand Robinson, co-owner of Traxx Atlanta, was killed Aug. 25. Atlanta police say they have a person of interest in the case. (Courtesy Traxx)