MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A woman is charged with attempted first-degree murder, domestic assault and several other felony charges after police say an argument with a roommate ended with a car full of children shot up outside a Whitehaven apartment.
Police say Latisa Key, 22, was in a verbal argument with her roommate at the Winchester Grove Apartments on May 16 when things turned physical. Another woman at the scene allegedly pepper sprayed the victim and the group began fighting.
The victim left the apartment by car and as she returned, she told police she saw Key, a driver and an unknown man sitting inside Key’s car at the entrance.
The unknown man leaned out of Key’s vehicle and fired several shots at the victim as she drove by, police said.
The woman said her 3-year-old daughter, 2-year-old son, cousin and girlfriend were in the car with her when it was shot. The girlfriend’s leg was grazed by a bullet, police said.
State representative Antonio Parkinson says the headline to this incident is the young children who witnessed the gunfire.
“It’s completely out of control,” Parkinson said. “Think about the frequency we’re seeing this now.”
It’s a frequency like no other. In Memphis, youth violence is plaguing the city. Young children are shot, even killed.
And nationally, it’s not any better. A mass shooting in Texas this week took the lives of 19 children and two teachers at an elementary school.
“These things should not be happening, but they are happening because of these policies that some of these elected officials are putting forth,” Parkinson said.
Those policies include loosening gun laws. Parkinson says local leaders also need to tackle poverty, education, mental illness and realize the trauma children are facing.
“Seeing the dead bodies, seeing the shootings, seeing the domestic violence and drug use and instability of moving place to place to place,” Parkinson said. “You think they’re not suffering from PTSD when they get to 15, and you wonder why they are becoming the shooters. This is what’s happening. We have to address these issues.”
Key has a court hearing set for Thursday. She is in Jail East.