MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Family and friends of a beloved Army veteran say persistence helped convince Mobile Police the death of Carl Sanders Jr. was not a suicide. The 36-year-old man was found dead in his west Mobile home two weeks ago, initially, it was reported as a suicide, now a man is behind bars charged with murder.
From a security camera turned up to the sky, to a front door family members say was unlocked, there was a lot about the death of Carl Sanders Jr. that didn’t add up.
“From going and looking at the scene I had a gut feeling it was not right,” said the victim’s sister Angel Dunklin. The case went from suicide to murder with the arrest of 38-year-old Marquis Stallworth days ago. Family members say it was tough to convince investigators this wasn’t another vet with PTSD taking his own life.
“They didn’t want to look any further, they were stuck on the idea that he committed suicide,” said Dunklin. Family members say Stallworth was a friend of Sanders. Dunklin said she kept in touch with the suspect and convinced him police had reopened the case
“I told him they had prints and they were waiting on the prints to come back and then they’d have the perpetrator, and I wanted to give you an update because I knew you were a friend of Carl’s and you cared for him,” said Dunklin. Family members say it was important to be Carl’s voice because this American veteran could no longer speak for himself.
“Very loving, caring would give the shirt off his back, he was a soft soul,” said Dunklin. Getting closer to the justice they sought, the loss still stings.
“It hurt twice, it hurt when we laid him down, but a second hurting back to back,” said friend Hai Vo. Marquis Stallworth has had a number of prior arrests. Jail record show he’s been booked into Metro jail multiple times for drug possession and domestic violence. The family set up a GoFundMe account for funeral expenses and exceeded their goal of $5,000.
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