Mother of 4 was shot, killed while 'trying to protect her baby,' family says

WAYCROSS, Ga. — Police are searching for a 21-year-old accused in the shooting death of a young mother of four.

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Crystal McBride, 24, died after she was hit by gunfire at the Garlington Heights apartments Thursday, according to police in Waycross, Georgia.

Family tells ActionNewsJax's Brittney Donovan that McBride had just gotten off work when she heard gunshots outside her apartment just before 11 p.m.

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“When she realized her baby was still outside, she went back to get her baby, and they went to shooting a second time, and that’s how she ended up getting hit,” McBride’s cousin Danielle Carter said. “She died trying to protect her baby.”

Waycross police are calling McBride’s death a senseless murder.

“She didn’t deserve that. She left all her babies behind. Four babies, and now they have to grow up without their momma,” Carter said.

Police arrested 31-year-old Jerell Gibson and 23-year-old Javontae Munford on murder charges in the shooting.

Officers are still searching for 21-year-old Walter Frazier Cobb Jr. They're asking anyone who sees him to call the Waycross Police Department or 911 immediately.

“There’s so many women and children – everybody was outside. It could’ve been multiple people that could’ve died,” Carter said. “It could’ve been one of her children. It could’ve been anybody out there. But they didn’t care.”

Family held a vigil for McBride on Saturday.

A large memorial sits outside the apartment where she and her four young sons lived.

A poster board with “I love you” messages from friends and family hangs on the door.

One person wrote: “I will always tell your kids about you. You will never die.”

“Senseless crimes for nothing,” McBride’s cousin Laroyall O’Hara said.

Family members started a GoFundMe account to raise funds for McBride's burial.

Waycross police are asking anyone with information about McBride's murder or Cobb's whereabouts to call the police department at 912-287-2921 or the anonymous tip line at 912-287-2924.