Shakeia Holmes, 25, was charged Friday with third-degree murder in the shooting death of her four-year-old daughter, who accidentally shot herself in the eye with a gun she found in a closet of her Philadelphia home, according to WPVI.
Police say the incident happened around 12:30 p.m. on Thursday. Authorities allege Holmes tried to cover up the shooting and also issued an arrest warrant for Demetrius Williams, Holmes’ boyfriend. Along with other charges, Williams faces involuntary manslaughter.
Margie Malavet, who was nearby at a local clinic, said she walked outside Thursday afternoon and found Holmes frantically searching for help.
“She was hysterical crying. She just kept saying, ‘save my baby, save my baby, save my baby,'” Malavet said.
Holmes told Malavet she found her daughter lying on the floor while other children in the home were playing upstairs. Holmes’ three-year-old daughter was also in the house at the time the gun went off.
“I ran into the clinic and got the security guard, and all the nurses came out running over here, and the girl was just gasping for air,” said Malavet.
Medics rushed the toddler to Hahnemann University Hospital. She was pronounced dead about 30 minutes later.
At a vigil for the girl on Friday, community members called for parents to keep their bullets in a separate locked box and to store their guns in safe places.
“I see them all the time. Sometimes I sit out here,” Holmes’ neighbor, Felicia Roussaw, told WPVI. “I see the kids running up and down the block, playing. The mother sits out there sometimes with them.”
An investigation into the shooting death continues.
SOURCES: WPVI | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter