PINELLAS Co., Fla. (WFLA) — St. Petersburg police have arrested a suspect in the death of a mother who was killed in front of her two children last week.
Police said 21-year-old K’Mia Simmons was shot and killed in a car as she held her 1-year-old daughter in her lap and protected her from the gunfire.
Tyron Jackasal, 20, is facing robbery and first-degree murder charges in connection with Simmons’ death, police announced Wednesday.
Police told 8 On Your Side he was already in jail on a robbery charge.
According to police, the shooting, which occurred March 30 in the 1800 block of 22nd street South, had stemmed from the robbery. Police said Jackasal had stolen a gold chain from the victim and planned to target their friends.
He is accused of shooting and killing Simmons as she sat in the car with her two children.
Police believe me meant to target Parise Lovett, the driver of the Volvo that Simmons was in.
Police also arrested Lovett on charges of failure to appear.
Simmons’ loved ones were relieved to hear news of the arrest, but now the long road to justice begins.
“They’re locked up, but it don’t bring my sister back,” said Simmons’ sister, Lashawn Laster. “If locking them up would bring her back, then this would be the best day in the world.”
Her mother, Linda Simmons still can’t believe her daughter is gone.
“For something to happen to such a beautiful girl like she was, it’s just heartbreaking,” Linda Simmons said. “I live moment, second by second, moment by moment. My thing is now is my grandchildren. And if it wasn’t for my grandchildren.”
Now, K’Mia’s family members are praying for justice.
“We all know he’s a coward because over a piece of jewelry?” Laster said Wednesday afternoon. “You actually were going to take this man’s life over a necklace, something that can be replaced? You can’t replace a life.
Simmons is a bit more direct. She says she will not rest until her daughter’s killer meets his maker.
“I want to be able to look in his eyes as he suffers. As they, however they execute him, I’m calling for execution,” said Linda Simmons. “Y’all want to know what would make me happy? That would make me happy. Ok, that is the only thing that would make me happy. I need his life.”