It would be the worst phone call Jonathan Phillips ever received: His 7-year-old daughter, Ava Phillips, had been shot in the head and killed.
The call shocked Phillips, as he’d left Ava and his son with their mother for a family gathering at an Atlanta, Georgia, apartment complex on Saturday night, he told Channel 2 News. But that family party had turned sour, he’d later find out, ending with his daughter killed, her mother arrested, and a 23-year-old man charged with murder.
“It’s just unbearable pain,” Phillips said. “The worst thing imaginable.”
Cops say an argument broke out for an unreleased reason at the Camden Vantage Apartment complex around 10:15 p.m. and shots were fired. Cops were called, but Ava was dead with a bullet wound to her head by the time officers arrived at the scene.
“Any death is tragic, but when there’s a child involved, it really hits home,” Atlanta police Deputy Chief Charles Hampton Jr. said at a press conference Monday.
While Ava was killed Saturday, her alleged killer, Deshon Collins, remained at-large on Monday, Atlanta police said, with a warrant out for his arrest. The girl’s mother, 44-year-old Kemeka Springfield, was taken into custody on Monday.
Authorities have not specified their exact roles in Ava’s death, but Collins faces a murder charge while Springfield faces charges of aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.
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SOURCE: The Daily Beast, Josh Fiallo