Allegheny County

‘He loved everyone:’ Mother remembers son who was killed while working security at local club

PITTSBURGH — Police have arrested the man in connection with a fatal club shooting that happened in Pittsburgh’s Knoxville neighborhood last week.

Police say surveillance footage, along with eyewitnesses, helped identify 23-year-old-Akeyba Sanchez of Pittsburgh as the man who is responsible for the shooting death of Willis Brooks, a Pennsylvania constable. The shooting happened shortly before 3 a.m. on March 18 on Bausman Street and Brownsville Road.

According to the criminal complaint, Brooks — who was working security at Nerdz Lobbi, an after-hours club — was escorting an unruly couple out of the establishment when Sanchez and another man appeared shooting multiple times before fleeing.

Officers found Brooks shot multiple times.

Brook’s mother spoke to Channel 11 and said she wants people to remember her son by how he spent his last moments, “helping keep others safe.”

“My son Will is a protector,” said Oneka Jones, Brooks’ mother.

Jones shared that her son, “Will,” was also a father who’d just welcomed his youngest daughter just two months ago.

Brooks worked as a school security guard. “He felt that a person who couldn’t help themselves needed his help,” said Jones.

Jones said that even as her son worked in security, he continued to dream of one day becoming a police officer. Being a police officer was something she said Brooks was born to do.

“He [Brooks], I want everybody to know not every cop has a bad story, I want to help people,” said Jones.

Helping people was exactly what Brooks was doing the night he was killed — removing an unruly couple from Nerdz Lobbi, so that others could enjoy their evening safely.

“I feel robbed,” said Jones as she fought to hold back tears.

Jones said she taught her son to choose love and not hate and wants more parents to do the same, so that senseless violence like this will stop.

“They don’t realize they took away the most beautiful thing in the world because he [Brooks] loved everyone,” said Jones.

Officer Brooks’ family has begun a GoFundMe to collect monies for his funeral arrangements. Click here to donate.