Police determine death of homeless man found near Antioch medical offices a homicide

Antioch Police officers place a stone into an evidence bag at the scene of the discovery of Raheem Coe’s body on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. Photo courtesy of Art Ray Bay News Video. A memorial to Coe was placed at a nearby gas station. Photo by Katherine Wade. Source: Facing Homelessness in Antioch

Detectives seek public’s help; homeless advocates and friends share about 48-year-old Raheem Coe

“Raheem didn’t mess with nobody.” – longtime friend, Katherine Wade

By Allen D. Payton

On May 15, 2024, at approximately 7:19 AM, Antioch police officers responded to the 2200 block of Country Hills Drive to assist Contra Costa Fire on a reported male down on the sidewalk possibly in need of medical attention.

When officers arrived, they located a deceased male. He was later identified by Deputy Contra Costa County Coroner Sanchez as Raheem Coe, a 48-year-old man from Antioch. (See related article)

According to a press release issued Friday night, May 17, 2024 by Lt. Desmond Bittner of the Investigations Bureau, “Antioch Police Department detectives have continued to work diligently on this investigation over the past several days. After an autopsy and further investigation, the death has been determined to be a homicide. The victim frequented the area where he was discovered. Detectives are still asking the public for assistance as they continue to investigate.”

Independent reports from two sources claim Coe’s death was believed to be caused by blunt force trauma, including to his head and chest.

According to local homeless advocate Andrew Becker who knew Coe and had several interactions with him, “Raheem Coe was on the street for the last couple of years, in the Lone Tree-Deer Valley area. He’s had several interactions with City staff including being swept multiple times by Public Works and Code Enforcement.”

“We had several conversations about shelter and services, and he was seeking shelter,” Becker continued. “The last contact I had with him was a week-and-a-half ago. He did have contact with his family who are also local.”

“Due to the limited resources available, appropriate services were never offered to him,” Becker added. “This is the perfect example of a local family that needed strong, supportive services and resources but without a true, hands-on approach, he remained stuck in the cycle that the majority of unhoused residents are in, right now.”

incident, the organization’s leader, Nichole Gardner wrote, “This was one of our unhoused friends named Raheem that has been on the streets for years. Prayers for his friends and family.”

In a comment below the post Salim Coe wrote, “Raheem was my brother. Me and my family are very devastated.”

In a May 17th post on that same page Gardner wrote, “My heart has been heavy all day. I pray I will never have to know what it feels like to lose one of my sons. The heartfelt cries of Raheem’s mother have been with me all day. She is an older woman and just cried and cried to me on the phone. I can only hope I said the right thing and was supportive. I reached out to some amazing women who connected with her to give her support and called and visited with her. I am so heartbroken for his mom and brother who have no other family out here. Their family is in Ohio. She continuously said she just wanted to talk to someone. The pain in her heart was unbearable. Please God, help this mother and her family during this time. Please keep them in your prayers.”

Later Gardner posted, “Rest in Paradise Raheem. You will be missed” with a photo provided by Antioch resident Katherine Wade of a small memorial to Coe, placed at the gas station at the corner of Lone Tree Way and Mokelumne Drive, which includes a cross, two photos of him and a cup of coffee.

When reached for comment she said, “I didn’t know Raheem, but I know he was well-loved in the community. There are so many people who knew him.”

When reached for comment Wade shared, “Raheem was a good person, I’ve been knowing him for 12 years. He used to be with my son. Raheem didn’t mess with nobody. He wasn’t comfortable with people approaching him. He’s been to my house with my sons doing music in the garage. I used to feed him on the holidays. It hurts for someone to do him, like that.”

Gardner later shared, “His mother said her door was always open. She would bring him supplies and food and tell him he could come home anytime when he was ready to do so. She was crying with a broken heart, realizing the day she prayed for would never happen. She loved him dearly.”

Any information concerning the investigation can be directed to Antioch Police Detective John Cox at (925) 481-8147 or by email: jcox@antiochca.gov. Anonymous tips or information about this – or any other incident – can be sent via text to 274637 (CRIMES) with the keyword ANTIOCH.

the attachments to this post:

APD officers place stone into evidence bag 05-15-24 ARay BNV & Coe memorial

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