Veteran working 2 jobs to support his dreams was killed over a car, family says

Korri Jackson was shot and killed April 20 outside an upscale townhouse community

Credit: Courtesy

Credit: Courtesy

Two days before Atlanta police discovered the body of Korri Jackson shot multiple times at a townhouse community in Riverside, he was working out with his older brother and dreaming big dreams.

Jackson, 26, met his brother Kerri at the gym and caught him up on his life: his progress at tech school, the religious fast he was completing with his girlfriend, the trip to Dubai the couple planned for June. Jackson had traveled the country during his years in the U.S. Army and the Georgia National Guard, but this would be the first stamp in his passport.

“He was just really at peace,” said Kerri Jackson, his brother’s senior by a mere 11 months.

On the morning of April 20, Jackson’s dreams were dashed by what his family said appeared to be a random crime. He had returned to his girlfriend’s home at One Riverside West in northwest Atlanta after getting off one job and was napping in his work van before going to the next.

He was confronted by a gunman, shot, and killed. While Atlanta police have declined to provide further details in the case, citing the ongoing investigation, his brother described Jackson’s death as a simple “car mugging.”



Both Jackson’s white work van and his red Chevrolet Camaro were towed from the complex on Main Street during the initial investigation. His death was the first violent crime at the upscale townhouse community, built in 2021. Two vehicles were stolen there last year, according to crime data from the police department, and it has seen its share of petty thefts and vehicle break-ins.

No suspects have been publicly identified in Jackson’s case, but police believe it may be connected to another shooting death reported around the same time.

Just over a mile away, in the neighboring community of Carver Hills, the occupants of a black vehicle flagged down a passerby at the Flipper Temple Apartments on Abner Terrace and asked for help for 19-year-old Jalen Curtis, who was slumped over in the back seat. They dumped him out of the vehicle and left him for dead, according to a police report.

A vehicle located a few blocks from the apartments was later tied to both crime scenes.

Unlike One Riverside West, Flipper Temple is known as a hotbed for crime. A 2022 investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution listed it among the metro area’s persistently dangerous complexes. The connection between the two deaths remains unclear, a police spokesperson said Thursday.

“You never think it’s going to hit your own home, until it does,” Jackson’s mother, Kalena Davis, told the AJC this week.

Credit: Courtesy

Credit: Courtesy

A counselor at an Atlanta high school, Davis said she sees students every day who deal with the effects of gun violence in their community, and returning to work has been difficult. The support she’s received from the many who loved her son, a 2014 New Manchester High School graduate, is sustaining her.

His high school held a balloon release for Korri last month, and a funeral was held in Atlanta last week. Mourners were asked to wear red and black in honor of his favorite sports teams, the Georgia Bulldogs and Atlanta Falcons.

“We didn’t know he had touched so many lives until so many people had reached out after the fact,” Davis said, adding, “I raised a good boy.”

One of Jackson’s deployments with the National Guard sent him to the Texas border, his family said. Some of his friends there drove 12 hours for the funeral to honor Jackson, the godfather of their child. They were joined by some of his superior officers, which Kerri Jackson said was a testament to his brother’s combined eight years in the armed services. He was honorably discharged just two weeks before his death.

While in the military, Jackson worked as a civil engineer, but he was excited about charting his own course. His degree in cyber security, a new promotion at his sales job and all his side gigs were in service of “what he wanted to do, and not what he had to do,” his brother said.

Credit: Courtesy

Credit: Courtesy

It’s hard for his family to consider all that Jackson could have achieved. A loving uncle, Jackson was looking forward to having children of his own one day, his older sister Breonna Leon said. He was even considering proposing to his girlfriend.

“He was out here doing the right thing,” Davis said, comparing Jackson to his killer. “He could have easily resorted to selling drugs or robbing other people, but he didn’t. He wanted to buy his own home, and he did. Sometimes he worked two, even three jobs to accomplish his goals.”

The family is now calling for justice and hopes those responsible will be held accountable.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Atlanta Police Department. Tipsters can remain anonymous, and be eligible for rewards of up to $2,000, by contacting Crime Stoppers Atlanta at 404-577-8477, texting information to 274637 or visiting the Crime Stoppers website.