MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Memphis Police now know the name of a shooting victim who’s been at the hospital for weeks with a gunshot wound to the head.
Because of her injury, she’s unable to speak and was unable to tell police who she was or who shot her.
WREG posted a picture of the woman Friday that police had retrieved from her phone as officers pleaded with the public to help identify her.
That same day, relatives said a friend of the victim who lives in Louisiana saw WREG’s post and contacted them.
They immediately recognized her as 37-year-old Lakendra Burgess Wade and flew to Memphis from their home in California.
“It’s just crazy, man,” said Wade’s brother Kneota Ward. “It’s just crazy. It really is.”
Wade’s family said they last spoke to her via Facetime in mid-January but had no idea she had been shot or that she was even in Memphis.
“She had a felony, an outstanding warrant in California, so she basically was in Louisiana. I did not know my daughter was in Tennessee,” mother Denette Foster said.
Police said just after midnight on Jan. 28, a man brought Wade to the emergency room at Regional Medical Center.
He claimed not to know her and said he had found her on the street outside Westside Elementary in Frayser.
“Whoever did this to my daughter, I hope you rot in hell,” Foster said.
“I ain’t never seen nobody in the hospital with bullet wounds,” Ward said. “Not even to the leg, nowhere, so seeing my own sister laid up like that, it’s just hurtful, man.”
Even more hurtful is the thought of having to return home more than 1,000 miles away without their loved one.
“I want my daughter back in California,” Foster said. “They’re gonna ask me how am I gonna get her there. Don’t you guys have the resources?”
Foster said hospital staff told her it would cost $100,000 to fly her daughter to California on a medical helicopter. The family has set up a GoFundMe account.
Police appear to be no closer to finding her daughter’s shooter, as her daughter is bleeding from the brain and still can’t talk.