Sun. Jun 23rd, 2024

Kay was a loving daughter, mother and sister,” the woman’s father said.

ST. LOUIS — Kay Johnson’s father shared a picture of her with 5 On Your Side.

He said for the past two years his daughter lived on Compton Avenue in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood on St. Louis’ south side.

Johnson’s dad lives in Tennessee.

He said late Tuesday night his daughter was driving her Honda Civic into her garage behind her home when gunfire rang ripped across the air.

A bullet hit the 38-year-old mom in her face, killing her.

Johnson’s 14-year-old daughter was sitting in the front seat of their car and watched her mom die.

St. Louis police said they believe the innocent mom was just one of several victims in a string of recent attempted or confirmed carjackings.

Violent crimes that have unnerved Johnson’s neighbors who talked to 5 On Your Side on Wednesday.

“I’ve been robbed before, so I know how that feels. I’m now just very, very cautious,” Cheryl Tiolet, a neighbor said.

Police now have arrested three teenagers who allegedly are connected to the series of crimes.

“These young people represent a sea of young people who are caught up in the same lifestyle,” James Clark, the public safety director for the Metropolitan Urban League of St. Louis, said.

A “lifestyle” Clark said is going to take a community to help change.

“If we think we can just wish this away, we’re wrong. We’ve got to be very, very proactive in lowering our trajectory and enriching resources going into the neighborhoods,” Clark said.

In the meantime, Kay Johnson’s father said the arrests of the 16-, 17- and 18-year-old suspects bring some relief for him, Kay’s two older siblings and their hurting family.

Investigators ask anyone with information about Johnson’s murder to call St. Louis police or CrimeStoppers.