Charles Toles

Charles Toles

Charles Toles had recently enrolled in classes at Metropolitan Community College. In a Dec. 4 Facebook post, he wrote, “it took awhile I’ll be 31 this month … it’s time I put my right foot in front of my left and take the steps I need to become a better me.”

Toles, the father of two, died Friday night after being shot near 18th and Emmet Streets.

Omaha police responded about 10:45 p.m. and found Toles in a vehicle. He was declared dead at the scene.

A second man, 23-year-old Kameron Jones, was injured in the shooting.

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Toles’ friend Robert Wagner said Saturday that Toles “was focused on getting his life together for his kids and his mom.”

Wagner and Toles were cellmates in 2012. Wagner was serving a 60-day sentence for attempted assault of an officer. The City of Omaha later reached a $100,000 settlement with Wagner after an investigation found that police used excessive force when they arrested him.

Toles was in for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

When Wagner’s sentence was up, he started Project KNOSE, or Keeping North Omaha Safe for Everyone, an initiative meant to deter violence and help ease mistrust of the police in north Omaha. Wagner said Toles “volunteered with KNOSE as much as he could.”

“He (Toles) accepted responsibility for his wrongdoings and told me once he was out he was gonna look me up. He did that, and we’ve been friends since his release. He’s been there for me and done more to motivate me to help others than anyone else I’ve ever met.”

Wagner said Toles kept on smiling no matter what and “was loved by many.”

The investigation into Toles’ death is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Omaha Police Department’s homicide unit at 402-444-5656 or Omaha Crime Stoppers at either 402-444-STOP or omahacrimestoppers.org. Tips leading to an arrest in a homicide are eligible for a $25,000 reward.

A GoFundMe has been set up in to assist Toles' family with funeral expenses. Donations can be made at gf.me/v/c/sl56/charles-toles.

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jwade@owh.com, 402-444-1067

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