Family of Richfield drive-by shooting victim waits for answers

- The drive-by shooting in Richfield, Minnesota that claimed Jonathan O’Shaughnessy’s life still rattles those he left behind.

His family says the 24-year-old had no known enemies. More than two months later, there are still no arrests in the case.
 
“He was family loving, never had a beef with anyone, he was just a good guy,” said Brian O’Shaughnessy, Jonathan's father.

On July 3, Jonathan was walking home from an annual dance he attended every year with his family near 64th Street when he was shot to death. Richfield police and family say it appears Jonathan was targeted in a random act of violence.

“A van pulled up, the door slid open, and someone yelled ‘We’re going to kill you’ or ‘I’m going to kill you’ and they shot him, in front of his family, dead. Unbelievable,” said Brian. “He was on a date with his family to a street dance that he’d been to his whole life, in his own neighborhood.”

The neighborhood is where Jonathan was the most comfortable, according to his relatives. Sunday, his family hosted a celebration of life gathering at the Minneapolis/Richfield American Legion Post 435. More than 500 people attended to honor a young life cut short.

“All the pictures we have of him are him with a huge grin on his face because that’s who he was,” said Kortney Nordrum, Jonathan’s sister. “You’re not even who you are as an adult yet. He was becoming this awesome man who really cared for his family and cared for his friends.”

The ambiance was replete with live music, family, food and friends. Cindy O’Shaughnessy, Jonathan’s aunt, told Fox 9 the celebration allows her nephew to be remembered for who he was not how he left the world.

“He’d take his mom to breakfast every week and then he’d pay it forward,” she said. “They’d pick who they were going to pay the bill for. Everybody was always excited if he was going to be there, so, it seemed particularly tragic that such a random thing could happen to him. It just makes it feel like it could happen to anyone that you care for.”

During the event, the family sold Justice for Jonathan t-shirts and collected donations to supplement the nearly $15,000 the family and Crime Stoppers are offering for legitimate information leading to an arrest and conviction.

“Maybe if the award is higher it might get someone’s attention,” said Cindy.

The family also plans to use remaining funds to launch a memorial scholarship fund in Jonathan’s honor. The scholarship, they say, would help students who want to attend Jonathan’s alma mater, Academy of Holy Angels, or other Richfield private schools, but need help with tuition.

“We’d like answers and we’d like to see the people responsible for this come to justice but we also don’t want that to overshadow who he was as a person,” said Nordrum.

Anyone with information about the case is encouraged to call the Richfield Police Department at (612)861-9898 or Crime Stoppers of Minnesota online or at 1-800-222-8477.
 

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