Recent graduate Na’Kia Crawford, 18, killed in Akron drive-by

An 18-year-old Akron woman was killed while waiting at an intersection and police are searching for a suspect who may be a white man

It is unclear who killed 18-year-old Na’Kia Crawford. The recent high school graduate was shot multiple times in broad daylight

(Credit: Crawford family)

It is unclear who killed 18-year-old Na’Kia Crawford. The recent high school graduate was shot multiple times in broad daylight while in a car with her grandmother at an intersection just north of downtown Akron, Ohio, according to News 5 Cleveland.

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Crawford began trending on social media on Monday as speculation ensued that she was shot by a white man in a racially motivated attack. While there is yet no confirmation of that, police did say that rumors of a spree shooter targeting random people in the city are unfounded. They are still looking for the car identified as the one leaving the scene.


Protests have begun in the wake of Crawford’s death. She had just graduated from Akron’s North High School a week ago and was planning to attend Central State University this fall.

Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan said that Akron’s police department would be investigating the case aggressively to find out who killed Crawford.

“I feel that it is essential to say clearly and loudly: Black lives matter,” Horrigan told reporters at a press conference. “Na’kia Crawford’s life mattered.” He said that he’d spoken to the family and promised a swift resolution.

(Photo: Crawford family)


“Her senseless murder is devastating, not only to her family and friends, but to the entire Akron community,” Horrigan said according to Akron’s Beacon Journal.  “I spoke with Na’kia’s father and uncle, who I know, early [Monday] morning, and my heart truly goes out to all Na’kia’s loved ones in this time of incredible grief and pain. These events are extremely real and important to me and to the Akron Police detectives investigating Na’kia’s death.”

Crawford’s grandmother was not injured in the shooting. Demonstrators came to the intersection where Crawford died on Monday to pay their respects and to express their condolences as well as to proclaim that black lives matter.


A statement was issued from Akron Public Schools Superintendent David James who said the entire school community is mourning Crawford’s death.

“We will never know what Na’Kia Crawford might have done in or after college,” James said in the statement. “She is our second student in a week to die a violent death. The flame of her candle went out way too early. To make it to her high school graduation, with plans for her future, especially during this difficult time of COVID-19, just stings that much more. The heartache is real for those of us left behind to pick up the pieces.”

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Akron is a city of less than 200,000 that is 30 miles south of Cleveland. It has become best known in recent years as the hometown of NBA superstar LeBron James. 

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