It was a robbery gone horribly, horribly wrong, police said.
On New Year’s Day, police discovered 21-year-old Marlazia Jones-Mattox and 23-year-old Keith Brian Williams III shot dead in their Columbus, Ohio, home. Jones-Mattox had been 35-weeks pregnant at the time, and she was rushed to the hospital so doctors could deliver the unborn child by emergency caesarean section, police said.
“She was looking forward to being a mother,” Lakeisha Jones, Jones-Mattox’ sister, told WCHM. “That’s all she talked about. She couldn’t wait till her son got here to be the best mom she could be.”
Williams, the child’s father, was pronounced dead at the scene after police arrived at 11:45 p.m. on Jan. 1, police said. The child’s mother and another victim were transported to Mount Carmel West Hospital, where the mother died and the third victim was in very critical condition.
Doctors were able to successfully deliver the baby boy, though, police said.
Police haven’t identified any suspects in the killing, but they’re looking for a grey or silver SUV that one or more suspected shooters may have used to flee the crime scene. The vehicle may have bullet holes in the passenger’s side.
“This guy who did this. Who in the hell is he?” asked Yvonda Jones, Jones-Mattox’ mother, WCHM reports. “He’s evil. He needs to pay. I want him to pay. I want answers.”
There were a record 143 homicides in Columbus last year, the Columbus Dispatch reports. The two parents’ deaths were among the first in the city in 2018.
“My life is just over,” Jones, the pregnant victim’s mother, told WCHM. “She was so good and so sweet. So talented. Loved her family, her sisters.”
Jones said that the baby is getting stronger, though.
“He’s a strong boy, he’s a strong baby,” Jones told WSYX. “He opened his eyes already.”
The baby was named Markeith Kamar Jones Mattox Williams after his parents, Fox 8 reports.
The pregnant victim’s stepmother, Tyra Mattox, told Fox 8 that Markeith has needed blood transfusions, and lost oxygen at one point, which could lead to brain damage.
Still, the family is hopeful.
“I was talking to him this morning and grabbed his little hand, and I told him his mom was watching over him, and it was almost like he gripped my finger a little bit,” Mattox told the TV station. “You can see both of them in the baby. It’s just, he’s just so beautiful.”
And Jones, the baby’s grandmother, has a warning for the perpetrators.
“They just better remember, what goes around comes around,” Jones told WSYX. “God does not like ugly, you are not going to get away with it. Karma, she is a bad woman.”