They worked together. They hung out together. And on Saturday night, the 20-year-olds were gunned down together, about a block from the home they shared with their mother, aunt and grandfather.
Tramaine Griffin was holding his 20-month-old daughter when he was killed, said his cousin Adrienne McCray. Jarmaine's 4-year-old son was there, too. The brothers were on their way back from Neats Bar & Grill on Kennedy Boulevard, where they had bought juice and chips for the kids, McCray said.
The gunman walked up and began pumping .40-caliber bullets into the identical twins, Eatonville police Detective Roy Smith said. Residents and guests in a nearby motel hurried to the scene after hearing the shots, Smith said. So did Francine Stewart, the twins' aunt, whom Jarmaine called as he lay wounded.
"There was distress that you could hear in his voice," Stewart said. "Next thing I know, somebody else said, 'Mom, both twins have been shot. Get here now.' "
When it was over, Tramaine lay dead, shot several times. His brother was taken to a hospital with a bullet wound to his side and one to his jaw.
According to a witness who gave Tramaine cardiopulmonary resuscitation, his last word was "Nevaeh," his daughter's name, McCray said.
Jarmaine Griffin is in stable condition in an intensive-care unit — the family asked that the hospital not be disclosed while the shooter is on the loose — and was well enough Monday to learn his brother's fate. He cried.
"They were the true meaning of twins," said McCray, who broke the news to Jarmaine. "You're there for me, I'm there for you."
The twins attended Edgewater High School and worked for their grandfather's lawn service, McCray said. Both have had significant brushes with the law. Jarmaine Griffin is on felony probation for a robbery conviction in 2010, and Tramaine Griffin was released from jail May 20 after being arrested in April on several felony charges.
Investigators say their records played no part in the shooting. However, a Facebook post last year by Tramaine Griffin eerily portended his demise:
"U chasein death everyday wen u walk down the street and getting in ur car," he wrote in July.
The man suspected of pulling the trigger, Timothy "Timmy" Lee Cobb, 20, had been a best friend to both twins, relatives said. When he found text messages between Tramaine Griffin and a woman who gave birth to the suspect's child about a month ago, he smashed the phone and got into a fight with at least one of the twins, McCray said.
Police have a warrant for Cobb's arrest, they said.
Relatives were concerned about the younger survivors. Jarmaine's son has displayed anger and frustration, knocking things over and covering his ears, presumably because he remembers the sound of gunfire, Stewart said.
"That's all he's been talking about," McCray said. "My daddy got shot. My uncle died."
The rest of the family is waiting for justice.
"We are a praying and forgiving family," McCray said. She said Cobb, of Eatonville, "should take the manly route and turn himself in. The only thing that would ease the pain right now is knowing he has to be judged for what he's done."
Anyone with information can call Crimeline, 1-800-423-8477.
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