Authorities in Philadelphia said a 24-year-old woman was fatally shot by her ex-boyfriend while she was walking her twin sons home after picking them up from school on Friday, NBC10 reported.
The suspect, identified as 28-year-old Donovan Crawford, allegedly shot Sykea Patton multiple times. The victim was later pronounced dead at a hospital.
“I’m suffering today,” Sykea’s father, Joseph Patton, told the news outlet during a vigil in her honor on Saturday. “I lost my daughter because of senseless gun violence. She didn’t deserve what happened to her. No woman deserves that.”
The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office named Crawford as a person of interest in Patton’s death on Monday. Prior to her death, officials said Patton was working on obtaining a stay-away order against Crawford.
Crawford has since been arrested, and he’s being held without bail. He faces a slew of charges including murder, reckless endangerment, and violation of the uniform firearms act.
Homicides in Philadelphia have spiraled this year and already surpassed 2020’s records, per NBC10. As of Tuesday morning, the city had recorded its 487th reported homicide. And that is a 13% rise compared to the same period last year.
A report by the Philadelphia police last week also revealed at least 240 women in the city had been victims of gun violence this year. Sixty-one of those women died. On Tuesday, Jessica Covington, a 32-year-old woman who was seven months pregnant, was fatally shot while she was removing gifts she had received from her baby shower from her car. Her unborn child also died from gunshot wounds.
“The gun violence in the city,” Joseph Patton said. “This has to stop. You know this has to stop. I’m 60 years old and they’re killing women and children. Every day here in the city. There’s no respect and there’s no love for nobody no more. We can’t live like this. As a people, we have to do better.”