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Ex-boyfriend arrested in connection with shooting that killed Bellflower mother in front of her family

A 27-year-old Bellflower man accused of killing his former girlfriend was arrested April 14, three months after the shooting, and pleaded not guilty to her murder on May 1.

Kenia Buckner was a 31-year-old nursing student who supported her three children as a hairstylist. She was shot in her apartment in the 16200 block of Cornuta Avenue in Bellflower around 1:35 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 16.

Authorities said Buckner’s estranged boyfriend, Antowan Ladell Parker Jr., barged into Buckner’s living room and shot her multiple times in front of her mother, the couple’s 10-year-old daughter and other family members. 

Parker pointed his gun at several of Buckner’s family members before shooting her, the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office said. 

Parker fled after the shooting, and a warrant charging him with murder was issued on Jan. 19, according to a news release. 

On March 21, the mayor of Bellflower offered a $5,000 reward for information leading to Parker’s arrest, and Buckner’s mother, Debbie, begged Parker’s family and friends to turn him in. 

Investigators found Parker in Downey on April 14. He was arrested without incident while sitting in a vehicle, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Lt. Joe Mendoza said.

Parker pleaded not guilty to one count of murder and two counts of assault with a semiautomatic firearm, according to the district attorney’s office.

Parker is being held in jail in lieu of $4.15 million bail, according to jail records. He is scheduled to return to court June 5 to schedule a preliminary hearing.

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