An Alabama man gunned down outside a gas station in broad daylight Tuesday afternoon had previously been shot 10 times in a six-month period.
Antoine “Twin” Collier, 29, of Birmingham, was killed when two unidentified gunmen fired more than 40 bullets in the parking lot of an Exxon service station in the city, AL.com reported. He died on the sidewalk in front of the store.
A Birmingham police spokesman said the shooting took place just before 1:30 p.m., as Collier and his girlfriend were entering the convenience store. AL.com reported that Collier’s girlfriend was not injured, but a female bystander who had just gotten food at a pizza place adjoining the Exxon was struck multiple times.
The unidentified woman was rushed to a local hospital in critical condition.
Police officials were familiar with Collier, who investigators believe was the target in the shooting that ultimately took his life.
“These guys were looking for him,” Lt. Sean Edwards, a police spokesman, told AL.com. “It’s obvious they were looking for him. They definitely targeted him.”
In at least two of the previous shootings in which Collier was injured, he was accused of stealing illegal drugs from another person, police officials said. Birmingham police Chief A.C. Roper said the circumstances that may have led to his killing do not matter.
“It’s a tragedy for his family, but regardless of the circumstances that led to his murder, we need to bring the killers to justice,” Roper told AL.com.
In April, Collier’s mother, Kimberly Flowers, spoke out about her son’s past.
“I’m the mother who hates to answer the phone,” Flowers said at the time. “You worry about your child.”
Her son, whose name was not made public at that time because he was a target for harm, had been released from prison a year before, but kept finding himself in trouble. The most recent shooting prior to Tuesday’s fatal one had been the most serious, with Collier suffering a gunshot wound to the face.
At the time of Flowers’ April media interview, Collier was still recovering from that shooting in a protective rehabilitation facility, AL.com reported. In a text message, Collier expressed hope that participation in the city’s Violence Reduction Initiative could help him turn his life around.
“I’ve cried till I can’t cry anymore, ‘cause I’m blessed,” Collier wrote, according to AL.com. “I think when my health gets better, I wanna speak to young black males about violence.”
Collier was released from the rehab facility this summer.
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