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Kentucky man sought in Lorain fatal shooting

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    Lorain police detectives enter a home on West 9th Street in Lorain to gather evidence from the scene where a man was found shot and killed.

    BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE

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    The man at the far right identified himself as the brother of the murder victim. He was talking to police as they start their investigation into the murder.

    BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE

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    A lorain police officer talks to one of the two dogs that had to be removed from a West 9th Street home in Lorain where a man was found dead Thursday.

    BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE

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    A man was found fatally shot in this home on West 9th Street in Lorain on Thursday.

    BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE

  • Brown-WEB-jpg
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LORAIN — Police are seeking a Kentucky man suspected in a fatal shooting on West Ninth Street in Lorain.

20995719

Lorain police detectives enter a home on West 9th Street in Lorain to gather evidence from the scene where a man was found shot and killed.

BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE Enlarge

Police were called to a home at 1103 W. Ninth St. Thursday morning after receiving a report about gunshots. They arrived and couldn’t get any response, so they removed an air conditioning unit and climbed in through a window, neighbor Ernestine Williams said.

Police found a man believed to be Lani Smith, the resident of the home, dead inside. Another neighbor, Brenda Valentine, who has lived in the neighborhood for 30 years, said Smith, 66, who was a Vietnam War veteran, had been there for about six to eight months. He also has two dogs in the home, but she didn’t hear any barking before police arrived, she said.

Police were still at the scene and sent an officer into the home to remove the dogs so that the scene could be processed.

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Lorain police provided this photo of Larry Brown, who is wanted in connection with a West 9th Street homicide.

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Police are seeking an arrest warrant for Larry Brown, 38, of the Louisville, Ky., area. Brown, also known as Seydi Umar Cisse, was last seen driving a gold 2006 Mercedes-Benz 500 with Kentucky license plate 797-TEZ.

He was believed to be wearing a Pittsburgh Pirates baseball cap, a black jacket and brown cargo shorts.

He is considered armed and dangerous. Anyone who sees Brown or knows of his whereabouts is asked to call police Sgt. Dennis Camarillo at (440) 204-2105.

West Ninth Street was blocked off from Oberlin to Washington avenues by police vehicles, but neighbors walked and rode bicycles to the scene.

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The man at the far right identified himself as the brother of the murder victim. He was talking to police as they start their investigation into the murder.

BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE Enlarge

This is the second homicide in the city in four days. Police don’t believe the shootings are connected. Smith has no criminal record in Lorain County.

Donny Daniel described the neighborhood Smith lived in as a mixed bag.

“You have people that want to live right and people that don’t,” Daniel said. “Sometimes freedom gets too free, don’t it?”

A man and a woman who identified themselves as Smith’s brother and sister walked under police tape up to the house. Smith’s sister let out a wail and yelled to police that she would not leave until she could get inside to see her oldest brother. Another brother paced on the sidewalk, shaking his head.

Tony Dillard, a friend, said the family was tight knit. Another friend, George Payne, said Smith had been living in California but moved back earlier this year to help take care of his sick mother.

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A lorain police officer talks to one of the two dogs that had to be removed from a West 9th Street home in Lorain where a man was found dead Thursday.

BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE Enlarge

Payne described Smith, called Smitty by his friends, as a “give the shirt off his back type of dude.”

He worked in the former Ford Lorain Assembly Plant until he retired, Payne said, adding that he had been married a few times and has a couple children, but was not married at the time of his death.

He loved his two dogs and a gold Cadillac that sat in the driveway next to the house.

“He washed and waxed that thing every day,” Payne said.

Police said the dogs were separated in a back room when they got into the home and were friendly and appeared well taken care of.

A barbecue smoker sat in the front yard of the duplex that Smith rented. Payne said Smith frequently cooked ribs for his friends.

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A man was found fatally shot in this home on West 9th Street in Lorain on Thursday.

BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE Enlarge

A tree planted in the front yard had four American flags stuck in the ground surrounding it, paying homage to his service.

“He loved his country,” Payne said.

While police collected evidence, the sister sat on the gold Cadillac until she was led way by police.

“It’s unexplainable,” Payne said.

Contact Jodi Weinberger at 440-329-7245 or jweinberger@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter @Jodi_Weinberger.



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