KANSAS CITY, Mo. – When her son was home visiting for Mother’s Day weekend, a KC mom had no idea it’d be the last time she’d see her son.
On Monday, months later, Carmen Allen sat reading out loud from the pink folded card in her hands.
“Happy Mother’s Day, best mom ever," she said before trailing off. “If I would’ve known that three days later he was not going to be here, this card…”
Her children had driven up from Texas for Mother’s Day. She said her 25-year-old son, Darrell Allen, spent a lot of time hitting the weights. That’s where he was May 16, 2018.
“Darrell was outside of the Genesis Health Club last May 16th," KCPD Det. Kevin Boehm said.
It was an early summer night, just before 10 p.m. at the Ward Parkway Center.
“A gentleman approached him, confronted him. There were approximately 30 shots fired," Boehm said.
“Thirty shell casings," Allen echoed. "They chased him a hundred yards. I believe people heard him screaming from the homes."
He died there, but Allen wouldn’t know until the next day.
“The one thing that keeps playing in my head was, ‘What was I doing at 9:34?’ [It’s hard} thinking that somebody was chasing my son and he was running for his life and I was just laying in bed," she said.
Allen said everyone has a past, has enemies.
But "whatever it was that he did, or hearsay, or whatever -- it does not give you the right to kill him," the KC mom said. "There’s one type of justice for me, and that’s justice through law enforcement. Not street justice. Not retaliation."
She also said keeping quiet isn't the way to break the cycle of violence.
"If you don’t want to speak up and get these people off the street, then you’re just signing the death certificate for your own family member," she said. "It’s guaranteed the next person that gets killed is somebody’s child, somebody’s brother, somebody’s family member."
The KC mom said she struggles with simple things, like strangers in her daily space.
"You’re somewhere and you look around and everybody that you look at, you’re like, ‘Did they have something to do with my son’s killing or do they know something and they just don't want to speak up?’” she said.
As she prays for answers about who killed her son, there's only one thing of which Allen said she’s sure.
"I know one fact about his case. He’s not here, and he’s not coming back. Somebody killed him.”
Detectives said the shooter was a black male with a white t-shirt wrapped around his head. They said he left in a black vehicle. Police are working anonymous tips from the Crime Stoppers TIPS Hotline but need more information to solve this case.
If you have information that could help police, you're asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-8477. You can also submit a tip online here. All tips are anonymous.