Deadly BP shooting an act of senseless violence, friend says

“Too many people are getting killed... They don’t even know who they’re pulling the trigger at.”
Published: Jun. 9, 2021 at 9:39 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - Family and friends are at a loss after a loved one died earlier this week in a shooting they describe as random.

Robbie Smythe Jr., says his family, was in the wrong place at the wrong time early Tuesday when he stopped at the BP station on Mitchell Avenue in Spring Grove Village.

The 31-year-old father-of-three had only stopped to get something to drink, according to Aric Watson, one of Smythe’s best friends.

“So far, from what I heard, he went into the BP wanting to get an energy drink before he started working,” Watson said. “He came back out, and two guys were robbing him.... Well, getting into his car.”

Watson says Smythe tried to stop the carjacking when he was shot.

At that point, Watson says, Smythe tried to get away, running toward the back of the BP building, where he collapsed.

Smythe was pronounced dead at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center shortly after he was found shot about 5 a.m., according to the Hamilton County Coroner’s Office.

No arrests have been made, and no suspect information was released. Police have not said if there is surveillance video.

“They killed the wrong guy,” Watson said. “He was a really good guy.”

Watson says he grew up with Smythe and that when Smythe wasn’t working, he always had a basketball in his hand. He played in the Cincinnati Crush Basketball League.

“He loved basketball,” he said. “He always talked about... He wanted to go pro and be a model, and I was going to be his barber. It’s good memories.”

Those memories are now all that is left.

“It’s tough, honestly,” Watson said. “It’s really tough knowing that he’s a good dude. He’s not into the streets or anything like that.”

Watson says the senseless violence has to stop.

”Too many people are getting killed. From what I heard, they don’t even know who they’re pulling the trigger at. He was a loving father, a good friend, family man,” Watson said. “If he’s listening to me, I love him. I love you Rob. I can’t wait to see you again.”

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