Community honors slain 12-year-old boy - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Community honors slain 12-year-old boy

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A makeshift memorial grows in Cherokee Park A makeshift memorial grows in Cherokee Park
Ray A. Etheridge Ray A. Etheridge

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Family, friends, and complete strangers gathered in Cherokee Park to create a makeshift memorial in honor of 12-year-old Ray Allen Etheridge Sunday.

Stuffed animals, candles, and flowers were placed near the pavilion in Cherokee Park, not far from where Ray's body was discovered Tuesday afternoon.

Police say the boy and his family were at the Mid City Mall in the Highlands, when Ray wandered off. Hours later, his body was discovered just off a wooded trail in Cherokee Park.

Within 48 hours, police arrested Joseph Cambron, 21. According to a police report, Cambron admitted to stabbing the boy several times and trying to hide the murder weapon.

"I picture his face the last couple times I was around him," said Ray's father Ronald Etheridge. "He was just so honest, he would never hurt a fly. So for a grown man to put his hands on my son--I just don't understand. There is no answer for what he's done."

Ray's dad said it was difficult to come back to the place of the murder, and that finding closure is difficult.

"I feel like I'm about to have a nervous breakdown any day now," he said. "I'm still in shock."

Family said they think Cambron should have been behind bars, and prohibited from being around children. That's because last year, Cambron was investigated for sexually assaulting a 6-year-old girl. A jury found him not guilty, but during the investigation, Cambron told police he had anger problems, and that he had been accused of sexual assault in the past.

Cambron now faces charges of murder and tampering with physical evidence.

Ray's funeral is set for Monday, October 6, at Scott Funeral Home in Jeffersonville. Visitation will begin at 10 a.m. and go until 1 p.m.

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