Eddie Russell Jr. TLC Singer T-Boz’s Cousin

Eddie Russell Jr.

Eddie Russell Jr. has been identified as the young man who was gunned down by police officers last week in Peoria, Illinois. Eddie Russell Jr. who was shot nearly 20-times was 25-years-old.

Eddie Russell Jr. is said to have been the suspect in an armed bank robbery last Wednesday. After police responded to the robbery and identified the criminal through surveillance video, they tracked down Eddie Russell Jr. to a house where he was ultimately shot 18-times.

Police and Eddie Russell Jr. –who happens to be singer T-Boz cousin –faced in a standoff that lasted over two hours. According to reports, police used his mother to lure him out of the house. They describe him as aggressive and that he was advancing toward officers with a gun.

Police confirmed firing 18-shots and according to the coroner, Eddie Russell Jr. was in fact struck 17-20 times.

Eddie Russell Jr.

T-Boz whose real name is Tionne Tenese Watkins and is best known for being a member of the girl-group TLC –has said to be heartbroken over the death of her young cousin. She has come public with the story tweeting

‘U Think The Tragedies That Happen Across The World Wouldn’t Happen2 U At Least U Hope They Won’t! But To Us It Did.’

T-Boz argues that Eddie Russell Jr. was gunned down by police in cold blood and labels it a ‘senseless killing.’ The 47-year-old Iowa native says her cousin was unarmed but her biggest problem is that T-Boz claims her cousin was mentally ill.

Eddie Russell Jr.

Watkins is also blaming officers for using Eddie’s mother to lure him outside. She says police promised her to give her son the help he so desperately needed. Instead, he was killed.

The Illinois State Police department is investigating the fatal shooting death. Police have since released a surveillance image where Russell can be seen holding what appears a gun, but his family is not buying it.

According to family members, Russell Jr., 25, had been released from an in-residence mental health facility just two days before the fatal shooting. His father, Eddie Sr. is said to have begged police to let him inside the house.