PETERSBURG — The mother of a woman shot dead Saturday morning in a downtown loft apartment complex has opened a GoFundMe account for her daughter’s funeral expenses, saying she wants to give her “the proper burial just like she would like it”.
Toni Knight, 19, was killed as she entered her Perry Street Lofts residence, her mother Diane Branzelle said in the account accompanying the account.
“[S]he was grocery shopping in his apartment when other people started shooting at each other and a bullet hit my little girl,” Branzelle wrote. She had no life insurance for her daughter because she “never thought I would have to bury my child.”
As of Sunday afternoon, St. Petersburg police had released no details of the incident. Two other people were shot, but their conditions were not immediately available.
“She didn’t deserve this,” Branzelle wrote. “My little girl was an innocent bystander.”
By Sunday, the fundraiser had reached over $2,500, with a goal of $20,000.
“I want to give her the proper burial exactly as she would like,” Branzelle wrote.
Knight’s death was Petersburg’s 11th homicide of 2022. This time last year, eight murders had been recorded.
The death was also the second in the week a woman was killed. On June 30, 26-year-old Kadesha Williams of Petersburg died of gunshot wounds shortly after arriving at Bon Secours Southside Medical Center.
Anyone with information about either shooting is asked to contact Petersburg-Dinwiddie Crime Solvers at (804) 861-1212 or use the P3Tips mobile app.
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