A 28-year-old North Carolina mother is facing three first degree murder charges after fatally shooting her 10-year-old daughter, two-year-old niece and another on New Year’s Day.
Speaking with the news outlet, McKinney’s sister and mother emotionally admitted it is “an extremely difficult time and truly tragic for the entire family.”
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Another person, Veronica Hayes, also revealed she was with the suspect less than 30 minutes after she committed the triple homicide.
“I was just trying to make sure she was OK, not knowing what had happened moments before,” Hayes told Fox 8. “She grabbed my hoodie and said, ‘I don’t want you to be involved.’ She said, ‘Sis, I don’t want you to be involved.”
“I think she was a little disoriented at that point,” she added.
McKinney was also reportedly involved in an accident after she crashed the car she drove off with into a power pole.
McKinney’s sister, Delilah Merritt, also revealed she received a phone call from her after the shootings and she confessed to the crimes.
“She said, ‘I killed everybody. I shot everybody in the house,’” Merritt told Fox 8. “She’s like, ‘My baby, my baby, I shot my baby.’ And then I said, ‘Where’s Serenity?’ and she said, ‘I shot her too.’”
“I never thought she would do something like this,” she added, revealing that she subsequently called for a welfare check on her sister’s house after their phone conversation.
McKinney’s mother, though devastated, described her daughter as a “loving person” and revealed she still loves her, according to Oxygen.com.
“We know that this is not her character, this is not her,” she said. “The love a parent has for a child is unconditional. We’re devastated with what happened. We’re not sure of the ‘why’ or the ‘how.’ The love I have for her has not changed.”
Her sister also suggested McKinney’s actions were probably as a result of challenges she was facing with life as she got overwhelmed.
The motive behind the killings are yet to be released by the police. Her next court appearance is on February 2 and she is currently being held without bail, according to Oxygen.com.