- Associated Press - Friday, June 26, 2015

MILWAUKEE (AP) - Jay Ro was peeling garlic to help his wife prepare a traditional Burmese breakfast for a guest when his 11-year-old son walked into the room - with a stranger holding a gun against the boy’s neck.

While trying to protect his son, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported, (http://bit.ly/1TSF0Hm ), the 48-year-old Ro was shot dead by the suspected armed robber. The account of Thursday morning’s ordeal came from the family’s caseworker with Catholic Charities, Steven Xiong, who has been working with the Burmese family since 2011, when they arrived in Milwaukee from a Thai refugee camp.

“He tried to stop him (from) pointing the gun at his son’s neck. He was just trying to help, and he got shot,” Xiong said.

The Milwaukee Police Department said in a statement Friday that its investigation and the search for suspects and a motive are continuing. Lt. Mark Stanmeyer said in an email to The Associated Press that police had no further details to disclose.

The caseworker said he learned the details from Ro’s wife, Ca Tri Na, and their 11-year-old son, Thee Ku Moo. He said the family’s other three children were elsewhere in the house at the time. So were Ro’s parents.

The 11-year-old answered the doorbell and let in two men who said they were repairmen. But one of the strangers then pointed a gun at his neck and demanded money. Moo told Xiong the man dragged him from the front of the house through the living room and dining room and into the kitchen.

Na later told the newspaper through another translator that they knew the man wanted money, but didn’t know what to say in English. She also said the other man went into Ro’s parents’ first-floor bedroom, rifling for valuables while the elderly couple watched.

Ro was shot in the chest while trying to get the gun off of his son’s neck, Xiong said.

Both suspects fled out the front door, with Na screaming and chasing behind them. She said they didn’t look back.

“He was a nice guy, a smiling guy,” Xiong said of Ro. “He wanted to be friends with everyone. He had a big family here in Milwaukee, and many friends.”

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Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com

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