Her brother’s keeper: Woman doesn’t want brother’s murder to be forgotten
Eight months ago Patrick Cotrona was walking down the street in East Atlanta with two friends when a man stepped out of the darkness and pointed a gun at them.
The robber shot Cotrona in the stomach and he died from those injuries. Police haven’t solved the case. There’ve been other high-profile murders since then that have grabbed headlines and the public’s attention.
Kate Cotrona Krumm, Patrick’s sister, hasn’t forgotten what happened to her little brother. She wants other people to remember, too.
“People forget,” Krumm said. “When people forget, crucial information is lost.”
On Jan. 16, Krumm, Atlanta Police Chief George Turner and Capt. Paul Guerrucci stood in front of a billboard erected on Candler Road. It contains two sketches of robbery suspects. Police think the suspects might know something about Cotrona’s murder. It’s one of seven billboards placed throughout the metro area, paid for by Cotrona’s friends and family.
There’s a $25,000 Crime Stoppers reward for information in the case.
Police officials at times struggled to talk over the noise of the traffic rumbling by. Cotrona’s family is hopeful that putting a sign on the busy road will jog someone’s memory. Guerrucci said the leads the police department had received in the case led to a dead end. Krumm said that on the night of her brother’s murder there were street lights out on May Avenue, making her brother’s killer difficult for his friends to see.
Guerrucci said any detail, no matter how small, could help police solve the murder.
“We will not forget and we will not stop until these cases are solved,” Guerrucci said. He said anyone with information can call him directly at 404-558-0785 or call Crime Stoppers at 404-577-TIPS. Anonymity is guaranteed.
Krumm said she was able to raise $3,500 for the billboards through a GoFundMe.com campaign. She hopes the lure of $25,000 in reward money will convince someone to come forward with information.
She said it’s frustrating to know that her brother is gone and his killer hasn’t been caught. If she could say something to the man responsible for her brother’s murder, what would it be?
“I’m not sure a plea for doing the right thing is going to resonate with someone who would do such a heinous act,” Krumm said. “I would say, before you hurt someone else, hurt another family, leave another person dead, come forward.”