New York City police are looking for a 25-year-old man who was seen fleeing the scene of a fatal shooting involving the son of a former Fox News employee last week in the Bronx.
The man, identified by police as Elijah Smith, fled in a gray sedan with a Connecticut license plate after shooting 34-year-old Duro Akil on Aug. 7, police said. Akil’s family ended up experiencing a double heartbreak after his father, Okera Ras, a former Fox News web video producer, apparently died in his sleep several days later shortly after his son’s death.
Akil was shot after he opened the door of his apartment because he heard commotion in the hallway. The shooter apparently had been involved in a dispute with Akil’s upstairs neighbor.
Akil lived in the apartment with his father. Ras was found dead in the apartment on Aug. 9, just hours after his son died. It is believed that Ras died in his sleep, possibly of a heart attack. Family members say the tragedy surrounding his son was too much for Ras to handle, and they believe he died of a broken heart.
Police are asking the public’s help in finding Smith, who is 6-foot-1 and weighs about 290 pounds.
They are offering a reward up to $2,500 payable by Crime Stoppers for information leading to an arrest or indictment in this incident.
The New York City Police Department could not confirm details about what led to the shooting.
Ras, who received a master’s degree in communication from New York University, was remembered in the Fox News newsroom as a diligent worker who had a warm smile for colleagues and a contagious laugh. He recently left Fox News to pursue his own business ventures.
Ras was a family man who was planning a family reunion that is taking place in Virginia Beach, Va., next week.
A GoFundMePage for the family said he “was a cultural custodian of Afrocentric traditions, including Kwanzaa, Khamitic and natural healing practices.”
Anyone with information is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782), by visiting the Crime stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.