BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The family of a 19-year-old Morgan State University sophomore says his killers need to be brought to justice.
Jonathan Tobash was the 335th person killed in Baltimore in 2017, according to police, and the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute graduate was shot after coming upon a robbery in progress.
“He was my angel,” his mother, Mary Harry, told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren. “We need to do something about this senseless crime in the street. There are a lot of good kids out here — like my son Jonathan — trying to do good, and it’s dangerous out here. We need solutions and actions to stop this crime, because that’s the only hope I have that my son did not die in vain.”
Jonathan was walking to a corner store just after 10:30 p.m. Monday when the store was in the process of being robbed. The two people holding up the store turned their attention toward him, police say. After a struggle, Jonathan was shot in the torso several times and later died at a hospital, according to authorities. Investigators are looking at surveillance video.
The robbery happened in the 3500 block of Pelham Avenue in Northeast Baltimore.
Jonathan’s father, Mike Tobash, called his son “my best friend” and asked anyone with tips to call police. His sister, Savannah, said she wanted to ask the people who did this, “Why? I just want to know why.”
Hellgren also spoke to Eugene Boyd, who graduated from Poly with Jonathan.
“This is not right. I don’t want to believe it. He was my bro,” Boyd said. “I pray and I hope — please get this guy or whoever they find because this, this just hurt my heart so bad. It’s like a chunk of my heart is gone.”
Boyd remembered attending prom, graduating and spending his high school years with Jonathan.
“He always told me to keep my head up. He loved my mother like his mother. I just feel bad for his mother, his father, his sister. When we graduated, that was the one. We graduated Poly together even though it was kind of hard, we made it. And I’m going to hold my head high for Jon.”
Jonathan was a promising sophomore at Morgan State University.
“The Morgan State University family is very saddened to have learned of the tragedy involving student Jonathan Tobash,” a spokesman tells WJZ. “The unfortunate death of this promising student is a true loss. We extend our condolences to Jonathan’s family and friends along with our hope that those responsible for his death are brought swiftly to justice.”
Police believe those responsible may be behind a string of robberies in Northeast Baltimore.
Homicide detectives are asking anyone with information to contact them at 410-396-2100, Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7lockup or text a tip to 443-902-4824.