Pregnant woman shot to death, family demands answers

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A family delivered an emotional plea for justice Monday evening after a 26-year-old woman and her unborn son were killed in a Memphis shooting.

Around 6 a.m. on Dec. 4, a woman was found shot to death near a home on Ford Rd., according to the Memphis Police Department.

SEE: At least 4 killed in shootings across Memphis this weekend

Family members identified the woman as 26-year-old Ashanti Smith. Smith died while 5 months pregnant with a baby boy, according to her family.

That boy would have been the first grandson for Ashanti’s father, Antony Smith, who had previously taken care of Ashanti and her two children in Memphis before moving to Ohio.

Now, those two children, two and three years old, are left to grow up without a mother.

“What this monster did to her, and I want people to understand also that he took my only grandson, she was pregnant with my grandson and he took both of them,” her father, Anthony Smith, said.

Her family said Ashanti’s daughters were in their home on Kentucky Street alone for almost 24 hours until someone came to get them.

RELATED: Woman shot dead in Memphis overnight, police say

It’s a thought that still haunts their grandmother, Ashanti’s mother, Macheryl Smith.

“It hurts because I know they wondered for those hours they were alone, ‘Where’s mommy? Where’s granny? Granny, where are you? Granny?,’” said Machery Smith.

Smith said they believe it was the father of her children who pulled the trigger. She said it comes from years of trying to tell Ashanti to get out of the relationship.

“We couldn’t get her to leave him. Couldn’t get her to call the people in blue to come here,” Macheryl Smith said.

“Somebody that would kill the mother of his child don’t need to be on this earth and definitely do not need to be free because he took my daughter, my grandchild, away from me,” Anthony Smith said.

Smith says she’s going to make sure they know who their mother was as they get older.

“She was a loving person. She’s going to be a missed person. The rest of our lives, she’s going to be missed,” said Macheryl Smith.

Memphis Police have not announced a suspect or any arrests in this case.