Murder Victim's Family Believes Shooting Was Planned

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In an exclusive interview with 27 NEWSFIRST, the family of 31-year-old Christopher Tolliver said Friday they believe their loved ones murder was premeditated.

"Yes, I believe he knew what he was about to do," said Tolliver's mother, Lillian Frederick.

She says Tolliver and the man charged with his murder, 31 year old Toby Lasure had been in an on-again off-again relationship, one Tolliver wanted to end for good.

"My brother, told me just two days before the shooting, he was planning on breaking up with Toby," Joy Middleton said.

She claims, her brother was scared to break up with Lasure because he was afraid of what he might do to him.

"Chris thought he would be safe if he told Toby in a public place where a lot of people were around," Middleton went on to say.

On Friday afternoon Toby Lasure, who police say admitted to killing Tolliver, pleaded not guilty to the murder in Fayette district court.

Police say Toby Lasure shot and killed Tolliver in the parking lot of the Lexington Green shopping center,

It happened at around 3:00 Thursday afternoon.

Police say after the shooting, Lasure fled the scene in his car and ended up in a standoff with police near The Ridge, a mental health facility, on Rio Dosa Drive.

Police say he had a gun to his head, threatening to kill him self. After several hours of negotiation, we're told he surrendered to police peacefully.

Lasure faces several charges including murder and leaving the scene of an accident. Police say that's because he collided with another vehicle before the standoff started.

Christopher Tolliver was an active member of the Lexington Children's Theater, award winning musician and a graduate of the University of Kentucky.

"He was special, he really was," Lillian Frederick said. "He just had a heart that never stopped and it's a great loss for us."

Joy Middleton says her brother was, "the light to her world," a man of integrity and someone believed in making the world around him a better place, especially for the kids he taught at the Lexington Children's Theater.

Visitation for Tolliver will be Saturday from 5:00 to 8:00 at the Ransdell Funeral Chapel in Harrodsburg.

His funeral will be Sunday at two.

The family asks that memorial gifts be sent to Lexington Children's Theater.

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