Columbus man charged with killing his mother and 8-year-old sister after family argument ends in gunfire
COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – A mother and daughter dead. A son and brother charged with their murder. And a father left stunned and heartbroken.
That’s what is left in the aftermath of a shooting in the 1500 block of 26th Street North in Columbus on Wednesday.
“To shoot your mom and your sister speaks volumes about what we need to do with our young people today,” says Marjorie Carter, who has lived in that neighborhood more than 40 years.
Columbus Police responded to the scene at around 12:30 p.m. after getting reports of gunfire.
“I thought maybe it was firecrackers or something,” Carter says. “I was out working in the yard and then I saw people running in that area.”
Officers found and arrested the alleged shooter, 22-year-old Jaquenton Bush.
He is charged with the murders of his 49-year-old mother Erica Bush Brewer and his 8-year-old sister Jadah Brewer.
“This is something that none of us are prepared for,” said Columbus Police Chief Fred Shelton. “Typically you don’t expect children and adults to get into this.”
Police say the incident started inside the home and a resident reported hearing at least 15 gunshots. Investigators say it appears Jayda tried to escape, but she was later found dead in the front yard.
“We know that there was some type of argument between the mom and the son,” said Chief Shelton. “We don’t know how that started or when it started.”
Erica was found injured inside the home but died on the way to a Jackson hospital.
Chief Shelton says they have spoken with the father and husband of the victims and suspect, who was not home at the time of the shooting.
“The dad is very distraught, understandably, and we’re not taking a statement from him right now,” the police chief says. “We’re trying to let him get himself mentally prepared to grasp this whole thing.”
Chief Shelton says neighbors are coming forward with statements and video to help in the investigation. He says this is especially crucial in domestic incidents.
“People are upset, people are angry,” he says. “We love our family and we tend to want to protect our family. This man is facing capital murder charges.”
On Thursday at 7 p.m., loved ones held a vigil at the family’s home where they released dozens of balloons into the sky while saying Erica and Jayda’s names.
People lined both sides of the street to pray, celebrate the lives lost and call for an end to the recent violence. Nehemiah Bush and Taylor Brown were Jayda’s cousins and say they appreciate the community’s support during this difficult time.
“These last couple days have been hard for me because Jayda been like a little sister to me and Erica is just like a moma to me,” says 15-year-old Nehemiah. “I just can’t believe my own cousin could do such a hurtful crime to my auntie. I just don’t know how to take it.”
“We love you Jayda. We love you TeeTee,” Brown said.
Jaquenton is being held without bond in the Lowndes County Jail.