Sunday, December 7, 1997
Family: Suspect was 'respectful'

The Cincinnati Enquirer

The imprint of Alonzo Davenport's body was visible in the snow Saturday morning.
(Gary Landers photo)
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One day after Alonzo Marcus Davenport allegedly shot two Cincinnati police officers and himself to death, his family remembered him as a talented basketball player and loving father of two.

''He was a happy, well-respected and respectful person,'' said his father, Perry Jones, who grieved Saturday with relatives at Alonzo Davenport's great-grandmother's home in Over-the-Rhine.

Mr. Davenport grew up in his great-grandmother's Republic Street home, playing basketball and avoiding trouble, relatives said.

He played basketball for Porter Middle School and Taft High School and coached a boys' basketball team at the LeBlond Boys & Girls Club.

''He'd be out there playing, as cold as it is right now,'' said his great-grandmother, Janie Mae Jones.

He moved into the Hollister Street apartment this year. Relatives say he lived there with a male friend, but landlord Orville Clark said he leased the apartment with girlfriend Alana Strother, the mother of one of his two toddler daughters.

Perry Jones, 38, father of Alonzo Davenport, holds Alonzo's daughter, Fatima, 2.
(Yoni Pozner photo)
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Mr. Clark said he gave Mr. Davenport an eviction notice three weeks ago because he was falling behind on rent in the subsidized apartment. Utilities had been cut off.

Mr. Clark said he was shocked by Mr. Davenport's alleged involvement in Fridaynight's homicides.

''He seemed to be a very meek individual,'' Mr. Clark said.

Neighbor Angela Whitterson had nicknamed Mr. Davenport ''Master P'' because he frequently played the rapper's music - at volumes that disturbed her sleep.

''The way I went off on him, I expected him not to speak to me; but he was always still real nice,'' recalled Ms. Whitterson, a University of Cincinnati undergraduate.

Orville Clark, who rented the apartment at 23 West Hollister St., rear, to Davenport, described him as 'meek.'
(Gary Landers photo)
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Mr. Davenport had one domestic violence conviction and two jaywalking convictions in the past year. At his death, he was on probation and was wanted on charges of domestic violence, passing a bad check, drug abuse and speeding.

The second domestic violence complaint was filed Oct. 25 by Ms. Strother.

''I came to pick up my daughter from Alonzo's house and he became angry because I had a drink,'' she wrote on the complaint. She said he pushed her three times, shoved her into a wall and then kicked her twice while she was holding her child.

Mr. Davenport's father wondered Saturday why two undercover officers would serve a warrant after midnight. He complained that police refused to let the family view his body.

''I got so many questions, but I'm learning everything from reporters,'' he said. ''If you can't go straight to the law for the answers, who can you go to?''

Kristen DelGuzzi contributed to this report.

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