Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Mom Heard the Last from Daughter, 13: 'I've Been Hit'; after Death in a Crossfire, a Murder Trial Is under Way

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Mom Heard the Last from Daughter, 13: 'I've Been Hit'; after Death in a Crossfire, a Murder Trial Is under Way

Article excerpt

Byline: JESSIE-LYNNE KERR

Tina Williams earns her living as a practical nurse, one trained to help those in pain and sickness. But Tuesday, she shared how all her training was not enough to save the life of her child.

Wiping away tears, she told a Jacksonville jury how she desperately tried CPR to keep alive her 13-year-old daughter, Shenice Holmes, as she cradled her in her arms the night before Mother's Day 2005.

"I've been hit" were the last words she heard from her daughter, who was an honor student at Highlands Middle School.

Williams was the first witness the jury heard in the second-degree murder trial of Willie O'Neil Tucker III, 20. Prosecutors say Tucker fired an assault rifle in the parking lot of the girl's Harts Road apartment complex as part of an ongoing feud with other residents. A bullet went through Shenice's bedroom window, through her pillow and into her body, snuffing out her life.

Williams told the jury how she spent the last day of her daughter's life. They went to Gainesville to visit Shenice's grandmother and take her shopping at the mall. Shenice, an avid reader, bought a new book there. As they drove home to Jacksonville that evening, Shenice read her new book in the car using a flashlight to illuminate the pages.

Before Williams went to bed in their Hartwood Place apartment, she said she checked on Shenice. "She was propped up on her elbow in bed, reading," Williams said.

As the mother got into bed in her own room shortly before midnight, she heard gunshots outside.

"Shenice came running into my room and I told her to get down," Williams said. "I asked her if she was OK. She said no. She had been hit."

Her daughter had a hole in her elbow, blood on her shirt and a graze wound on her forehead.

"Her eyes were rolling back into her head and I thought she was in shock," Williams said. "I called 911 and then, being a nurse, I gave her CPR because she had stopped breathing."

But it was not enough to save her daughter's life. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.