Alton Sterling was a neighborhood fixture

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Alton Sterling was a neighborhood fixture


Emily Lane of The Times-Picayune reports that from late in the afternoon until early morning, Alton Sterling stood most days over a table propped outside the Triple S Food Mart, playing music and selling CDs to the neighbors who knew him.


“If you didn’t hear music, Alton wasn’t there,” said Jonathan Banks, 22.


Banks was one of many at a vigil for Sterling on Wednesday night (July 6) who knew him because, he said, it was impossible not to know him if you lived nearby. Sterling was a fixture there, he said (


What music would he play? “Anything you wanted to hear,” Banks said.


Ariel Terk Jackson, another frequent customer, said Sterling displayed the CDs and DVDs in a cardboard box on the table. By Wednesday afternoon, that table was covered with signatures and flowers, a memorial to him (


Sterling was at that same spot outside north Baton Rouge store when he was fatally shot the previous morning by Baton Rouge police. Baton Rouge Police Chief Carl Dabadie announced Wednesday the shooting investigation has been turned over to federal investigators to ensure a fair, independent investigation. Meanwhile, multiple videos taken on what appeared to be cellphones circulated across social media, capturing international media attention (


Sandra Sterling said she worried about the man she considered her son “all the time” because he insisted on being in a dangerous neighborhood late at night (


Hundreds gathered at the vigil Wednesday, and news crews were there to record it. Politicians and activists spoke of the need for unity and the fight for justice. While Banks said he took in the message, he was there to honor Sterling because he knew and liked him (


People called him Alton, “Big A,” or just “CD man,” said Banks (


If you wanted Blues, and he didn’t have any Blues CDs, he’d find a Blues CD for you and sell it to you later, Banks said. He would hunt down classical music if you asked him for it, he said: “He was open-minded.” Banks guessed he’d seen Sterling nearly every day for the last five years outside the 24-7 store or at a spot down the block from there (


A lighter moment at the vigil occurred when a speaker said Sterling would have loved to seize on the opportunity to sell CDs to a crowd as big as the one Wednesday night (


“Man, I wish I had some CDs,” Sterling would say, he said (


Abdullah Muflahi, the owner of the 24-7 store where Sterling often perched himself, spoke briefly at the vigil. “I wish Alton was alive,” he said. “We’re going to miss him” (


See the full article here.


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