Philadelphia police have reported that on Saturday night, a Black woman who was seven months pregnant was shot in her head and stomach after leaving her own baby shower. So far, no arrests have been made and a $50K reward has been offered for information that leads to a suspect in custody.
According to NBC 10 Philadelphia, 32-year-old Jessica Covington was steps away from her home and was unloading gifts from her baby shower when a gunman opened fire.
“I heard like nine shots, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom,” Denise Wilson, Covington’s neighbor, told NBC.
Officers reportedly took Covington to Einstein Medical Center where she was pronounced dead at 9:06 p.m. and her unborn child was pronounced dead about 10 minutes later, CNN reported.
No weapons were recovered from the scene and no motive for the senseless killing been reported. The Philadelphia Inquirer recently reported that police were questioning a suspect but they’re still collecting evidence and charges were not yet filed.
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney tweeted Sunday that “The City is offering a $50,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest,” along with a contact number for citizens to call with information.
Covington’s story is eerily similar to that of 31-year-old Shanice Young, who was one year younger than Covington was and nine months pregnant when she was shot and killed in Harlem, New York. The suspect believed to be the shooter in that case is her ex-boyfriend and the father of one of her other children. Young was also shot after leaving her own baby shower and while unloading gifts into the lobby of her apartment building.
At some point, we are really going to have to examine the possibility that we are not doing enough to protect Black women, or, in this case, their unborn children.
These stories are heartbreakingly sad and this needs to stop.