A young mother was senselessly murdered by three teens in western Pennsylvania after she told them to “get a job” and stop roaming the streets when they asked her fiancée for a cigarette, police say.
Beaver Falls police have charged 14-year-olds Todavia Cleckley and Marcus Velasquez and 13-year-old Kyle Goosby Jr. with criminal homicide and other charges in Saturday’s shooting of 22-year-old Kayla Peterson.
She was shot at about 3:30 p.m. that day and died in a Pittsburgh hospital two hours later.
Goosby is in custody and his attorney says he was just “in the wrong place at the wrong time” when Velasquez – identified as the gunman by police – opened fire. Beaver Falls Police Chief Charles Jones says officers are still searching for the other two suspects.
WTAE interviewed Peterson’s fiancée after the tragedy. Holding their 23-month old baby, Bill Bailey said Peterson’s last words after being shot in the chest were how she loved him and their daughter.
“She didn’t even move when it happened,” he said, measuring his voice. “She just said, ‘I can’t feel my legs.’ She wanted to lay down, so I laid her down.”
Shockingly, Bailey says they knew the young neighborhood boys, and he’s played basketball with one of their fathers.
Brock Edwards, who was working at the convenience store where Bailey bought the cigarettes, weighed in: “My friend came in and got cigarettes, and three young kids followed him. They kept following him and asking him for a cigarette…”
He concluded, according to WTAE:
“The next thing you know, they just pull out a gun and shoot for no reason. It was just over a cigarette…Now, my friend lost his girlfriend — an amazing, amazing girl, and she was such a good mother, too — and now her child has to grow up without her mother being there.”
WPXI-11 News has more, including a picture the suspects posted of themselves on Facebook less than 12 hours after the shooting:
The Associated Press contributed to this report.