Rakim Marquis Lofton wrote on Khadijah Shantell Carney’s Facebook page this week to tell her that he loved her. He called her his best friend and said they were made for each other “n some strange way.”
Lofton and Carney died together early Friday morning in a shooting on New Bern Avenue. A man out walking called 911 to report that a car was rolling down the street and the driver was lying prone in the middle of the street with a gun near his body.
“And there’s somebody in the car,” the man, whose name was not made public, told an emergency dispatcher on a 911 recording that police released Friday afternoon. “I believe it’s two victims shot.”
Police found Lofton, 22, dead in the middle of the street, while Carney, 21, of Apex was unresponsive in a Mitsubishi Galant with its hazard lights blinking. The car had came to a stop near the intersection of New Bern and Trawick Road.
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Emergency workers transported Carney to WakeMed, where she later died, police reported.
Investigators have not disclosed a motive for the killings, nor have they said if the victims may have known the person or persons responsible for their deaths.
The shootings happened between 1:30 and 1:36 a.m. at one of East Raleigh’s busiest thoroughfares. The 911 caller said “a bunch of cars were pulling off the road” to avoid Lofton and to render aid.
The 911 caller told the dispatcher that there was “no response from either one” of the shooting victims. The caller saw a gun next to Lofton.
On her Facebook page, described herself as a student at Shaw University majoring in mass communications and that she worked as a cashier at Walmart. Shaw spokeswoman Odessa Hines said late Friday that she “could not fully verify” that Carney was enrolled this fall.
Lofton, on his Facebook page, said he formerly worked at Mattress Warehouse and attended Leesville Road and Sanderson high schools. He also wrote that he looked forward to spending the Christmas holidays with Carney.
On Tuesday, at 3:32 a.m., Lofton wrote on Carney’s Facebook page, “I love u so so so so much I know u sleep... I been at work for the last 6 hours thinking what Ima get you from Christmas bae I wanna buy you everything but I know I don't got 20,000 dollars to do that so Ima start with them smaller things u been saying u want.”
Hours later, Lofton and Carney communicated again on Facebook.
“I miss you,” Lofton wrote to her. “Is that steak finish[?]”
Carney replied that she did not know.
“But I miss you two,” she wrote back to him.
Both Facebook pages were filled with comments from friends expressing disbelief and shock over their deaths. One of Carney’s friends noted that she had seen the couple hours before they were killed.
“I don’t know what happened,” Carney’s friend wrote on her Facebook page. “I noticed you guys were drinking last night, but I pray to God this is not true!”
With the shootings taking place in an open, highly-visible area, police think that someone may have seen or heard something that could be helpful to detectives. They ask anyone with information to call Raleigh CrimeStoppers at 919-834-4357 or visit raleighcrimestoppers.org for text and email reporting options. CrimeStoppers pays cash rewards for anonymous tips that help solve cases.