WASHINGTON COUNTY, Pa. - The mother of a 10-year-old killed in an attempted home invasion in Washington Monday says someone knows who the killer is.
Channel 11’s Dave Bondy spoke to Taniyah Thomas’ mother Tuesday morning. She was not ready to go on camera, but told Bondy “someone on the street knows who killed” her daughter.
Meanwhile, Channel 11 News has learned that 36-year-old Shantye Brown is awaiting trial on felony drug charges.
The Associated Press reported Brown sold crack cocaine to an undercover informant. But police stopped short of saying that's why the apartment was targeted by gunfire that killed little Taniyah.
Brown's live-in boyfriend, 26-year-old Robert Lester, also has drug-related convictions in 2011 and 2013.
Brown told Bondy that those charges have nothing to do with her daughter’s murder.
The girl was killed in an apartment building on West Chestnut Street in the city of Washington. Washington County Coroner Tim Warco said the girl was shot in the head about 3:50 a.m.
A growing memorial of candles, balloons and stuffed animals sits outside the apartment building and continues to grow.
“They took her life away. I don't understand it," said the girl’s grandfather, Sherman Brown.
“I love her a lot, and I really miss her. I wish she could come back. The world’s just so cruel,” said Thomas’ cousin, Lebron Pierce.
Thomas was a fourth-grader at Washington Park School and on the cheerleading team.
During a news conference, police said whoever fired the shots kicked in a lower-level door to get access to the building. They then went upstairs, where the shots were fired. Investigators said Thomas likely woke up scared when she heard gunshots and tried running to her mom’s room, where she was shot.