Mother of man killed in Galleria shooting overcome with emotion at community event

April Pipkins, mother of Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford Jr., speaks at community meeting
April Pipkins, mother of Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford Jr., speaks at community meeting
Updated: Nov. 27, 2018 at 10:55 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - April Pipkins, the mother of Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford, Jr., fainted Tuesday night during a speech about the shooting death of her son at the Riverchase Galleria.

Family and clergymen spoke at the 16th Street Baptist Church calling for peace and understanding during a “Prayer and Justice Community Meeting” for Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford, Jr. Songs of praise and worship filled the historic church.

Pastors prayed that God would calm the angry and strengthen the fearful. Folks there say they came to be peaceful, show love to the family of EJ Bradford, and channel their anger in a constructive manner.

Kevin Miles with the NAACP says he didn’t want to animate people with the spirit of anger but with the spirit of courageousness.

“Silence in the time of gross injustice is deeply immoral. This is a time for moral clarity,” says Miles.

Benard Simelton, President of the Alabama State Conference of the NAACP demanded changes when it comes to how law enforcement handles similar situations.

“That is wrong in Birmingham, Alabama, that is wrong is Dallas, Texas, that is wrong in Chicago, Illinois, and that is wrong in America,” says Simelton.

Emantic Bradford, Sr. recalled fond memories he had with his son, those memories now bringing laughter and tears.

“But it’s to the point where I can’t hear him say “daddy” no more. He would never walk through my door and call my name again,” says Bradford.

The family will hold the funeral Saturday morning at Boutwell Auditorium.

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