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Mother of slain toddler pleads for leads to find daughter’s killers

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Almost a month after two-year-old Laylah Washington was gunned down in a road rage incident in Hickory Hill, the toddler's mother is pleading with the public to help find her daughter's killers.

Speaking exclusively to WREG, Leslie Washington opened up for the first time about the night her daughter was shot and what the last three weeks have been like for her and her family.

“I knew she was shot once I saw the blood coming down her face, but I didn’t want to believe it," said Washington.

Washington had just turned onto Kirby from Winchester June 11 after admonishing four men in a black car for driving recklessly in a nearby shopping center parking lot.

"They almost ran head-on into me, and I said, ‘Don’t hit my car.’ They said something back. I don’t know what they said‎."

Surveillance footage captured the black car trailing Washington's car moments before the four men inside‎ fired on her car, striking her daughter, who died two days later in the hospital.

“I don’t see how you even resting at night, knowing that you took an innocent baby’s life," said Washington.

Washington is using the more than 6,900 pictures she's amassed of her daughter to get her through the pain of losing her. But she's confounded about why no one has stepped up to identify the car in the video police released.

It's pretty much the only lead investigators have at this point.

"Everything that we're doing is leading to a dead end," said Sgt. Mark Lesure with the Memphis Police Department.

Police said the three persons of interest they questioned early on in the case all had alibis that checked out.

To the four men without alibis, Lesure issued a warning: "Don't sleep 'cause if you're out there, I'm gonna find you and I'm gonna get you."

For Washington, sleep is all but impossible.

Every time her mind flickers back to that nightmare of a day, she instead listens to Laylah's voice or looks at her pictures — snapshots of the life mother and daughter would have and should have lived for many years more.