10 years later, no active leads in East Atlanta shooting death

Credit: Miguel Martinez

Credit: Miguel Martinez

Patrick Cotrona was shot and killed May 25, 2013

It’s been 10 years since Patrick Cotrona was shot and killed as he was walking with two friends to a bar in East Atlanta. No arrests have been made.

“This is the only case that I have where I really have no leads. It’s very difficult because we’ve stayed in close contact with the family; they are still very active,” said Atlanta Police Det. Scott DeMeester, a homicide investigator since 2010.

DeMeester said Cotrona was walking with his friends when they were approached by an armed suspect.

“For reasons unknown, the suspect shot Patrick and one of his friends,” he said Thursday.

Cotrona died; his friend, Marcus Peden, survived. In a 2013 interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Peden said the suspect demanded money and that Cotrona was shot as he was reaching into his front pocket for his wallet.

Peden pretended to reach for his own wallet, instead pulling out a can of Mace and spraying the suspect, who jumped in a car and took off down May Avenue, shooting Peden in the leg.

DeMeester said investigators found two robberies occurred just before Cotrona was shot at 11 p.m. on May 25, 2013.

Earlier that night, a married couple in town for a wedding, were robbed at gunpoint at the intersection of Kirkwood Avenue and Pearl Street.

The suspect fired into the air, leaving behind a shell casing, before jumping in the passenger seat of a waiting car. Shortly thereafter and five blocks away, a jogger was held up.

Ballistic evidence and witnesses’ descriptions link the robberies and Cotrona’s shooting death, DeMeester said. He asked the GBI to produce an age-progressed sketch to show what the suspect might look like now.

“We are hoping someone will recognize either the depiction of the individual 10 years ago or what the individual may look like now 10 years later,” he said. “We are very confident someone out there knows something.”



In a 2017 interview with the AJC, Cotrona’s sister described him as much a friend as a sibling, with the two being roommates for a time after he graduated from Georgia Tech.

“He was so smart,” Kate Cotrona Krumm said then. “I loved talking to him. He was a super nerdy guy but had such diverse interests — writing, gaming, knitting, politics.”

In a recent statement, the victim’s family expressed thanks and hope.

“The Cotrona family is so grateful for the support of the Atlanta community these last 10 years since we lost Patrick to violence in EAV,” the statement reads. “We hope that someone who knows something will come forward and speak up so we can bring this case to a close and justice to Patrick and our family.”

A $25,000 reward is being offered for anyone with information in the death of Cotrona; contact CrimeStoppers at 404-577-8477.