Accused murder suspect's family speaks out

Posted: Updated:
Jourdyn Ford is facing robbery and murder charges in connection with what happened at a Peoria store last week. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Jourdyn Ford is facing robbery and murder charges in connection with what happened at a Peoria store last week. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Jourdyn Ford's mugshot. (Source: Peoria Police Department) Jourdyn Ford's mugshot. (Source: Peoria Police Department)
Family members say Ford is mentally ill. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Family members say Ford is mentally ill. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The suspect's mom says her heart is heavy because she says she considered the victim a friend. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The suspect's mom says her heart is heavy because she says she considered the victim a friend. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PEORIA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

The family of 18-year-old Jourdyn Ford says he was mentally ill and says because he wasn't given the right medical care, two families' lives have now been destroyed. 

Family members of the accused murderer, who asked not to be named, have a message for the victim’s family.

“First of all, I want to give condolences to Ms. Christina's family I would never want any of that to happen to anybody,” said one family member.

Police said Ford walked into a Peoria store, stole and then shot and killed the store owner, 57-year-old Christina Park.

[READ MORE: Police arrest 18-year-old suspect in robbery, homicide at store]

The suspect's mom says her heart is heavy because she says she considered the victim a friend.

“I know this woman personally. This is a regular store I go to. I would never wish this on this woman, never, ever, ever in my entire life,” the suspect's mother said.

She says her son has been suffering from severe mental illness since he was a kid.

“I have tried years and years and years to get him help. He's been in an institution, after institution after institution,” the suspect's mother said.

They say less than 24 hours before the killing occurred, Ford had been released from yet another hospital's psychiatric unit. It's something that his family says shouldn't have happened.
 
“I expressed to them that he has an extensive history of mental illness and everything else and they still released him the next morning,” the suspect's mother said.

The family says they feel the "system" let them down and more needs to be done to help the mentally ill.

“They just released him into society when his mind was not right and this is the result of it!” the suspect's mother said.

“They need to stop throwing them out in the world and expect them to be normal when they're not! They need help,” said the suspect’s aunt. 

Ford is now facing homicide and robbery charges.

We reached out to the hospital where we were told he was discharged from. They tell us they can't give us any information.

Currently, there are at least five bills going through the state Legislature dealing with changing or improving care for mental illness.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


  • Social Connect

  • Contact

    AZ Family