Zavonta Washington was known by many as a caring father with a sense of humor who enjoyed working on cars and riding his horses.
But now because of his untimely death his three children will not have a father and family members are left with a void in their life because they say Washington was murdered.
“I had to come to Clayton to plan my nephew’s funeral less than two years after I had to plan his mother’s funeral,” said Katherine Robinson who lives in Florida. “He celebrated his 26th birthday three days prior to his death. He had a wicked sense of humor just like his mother. He inherited his love of horses from his father. He had a very close bond with his sister and besides her children, he was the last of her immediate family members she had left. He was a hard worker and never hurt a soul.”
Concordia Parish Sheriff’s office recently established victim’s advocacy center in Ferriday specifically for family members of victims. CPSO’s Administration & Community Justice Center is housed at the old Delta Fuel building.
Counselors for the victims are provided by CPSO through its Administration & Community Justice Center.
“We’re really, really big on protecting the victim,” said Sheriff David Hedrick. “The investigation is a very painstaking process for the family. It can be drawn out. I can’t imagine what the family members are going through. My heart goes out to them during this time. We’re here for them, and we don’t just leave them. We’re going to be there for them through the entire process.”
At approximately 8 a.m. Oct 13, a 16-year-old allegedly shot 26-year-old Washington at a home on Margaret Circle in Clayton. Concordia Parish Sheriff’s office initially ruled the shooting justifiable as it appeared to be a home invasion, but further evidence has the shooting under investigation.
The case against the juvenile shooter will now go before a grand juryto see if there is enough evidence for an indictment. A date has not been scheduled yet, according to officials from the Louisiana 7th District Attorney’s office.
On the morning Washington was killed, according to Robinson, he went to the home of the mother of his children, Breanna Hinkston, to pick up school clothes for his son and return the mother’s EBT card. His son spent the previous night with Washington after being injured and taken to the hospital.
Upon arrival at the residence, Washington tried to call Hinkston and was knocking on the door, according to Robinson. Washington was soon shot and killed.
“His truck was left running in the driveway of the apartment complex. He was unarmed and his work clothes were laid out on his bed for his return home, so he could get dressed and get to work,” Robinson said.
According to Robinson, another juvenile was at Hinkston’s home and was also involved in the shooting.
Meanwhile, the same two juveniles were “running around free and wreaking havoc” in the Clayton community.
“I received a call from my niece, Zavonta’s sister, stating the same juveniles drove by her home today and fired 12 shots,” Robinson said.
She knows that it was 12 shots because that’s the number of bullet casings the police collected when they arrived. The juvenile’s car was identified as the car the shots were fired from. My niece has four small children. Why he and his brother are not in custody just escapes me.”
Robinson, a former law enforcement officer, said she understood the process, but that process still does not answer the questions or fill the void.
“How much crime needs to be committed and how many people have to die before these criminals are locked away,” she asked.