‘Something’s got to be done,’ slain teen’s stepfather says
The day after her 18th birthday, Shondricka J'nay Adams was continuing to celebrate late Wednesday.
The joy was supposed to linger as the teen headed to the hospital early Thursday with her older sister who was about to give birth.
When the coroner called before dawn, the family thought there had to be a mistake.
She couldn't be dead on the doorstep of a public housing unit at Davis Homes.
The Central Georgia Technical College student, who had her hair freshly braided for her birthday, was at the hospital, they thought.
Bibb County sheriff's investigators told them she was found dead with a 16-year-old male who was shot in the leg at about 5 a.m.
They were wounded in a Jeep Wrangler on Leaf Court, near the back of the neighborhood near the Ocmulgee National Monument on the east side of town.
"She left with her sister last night," Adams' mother Shiquita Lester said as mourners gathered in their front lawn on Bradley Place in west Macon.
"She hooked up with whoever Romeo is," Lester said. "She don't deal with the streets. Just goes to school, comes in here and goes to sleep."
Her stepfather, Garrard Hayward, said he recently had a talk with her about the dangers of being out at night.
He told her about an innocent woman who was killed on Winship Street near Mercer University. Hayward wanted the teen to be careful.
Church custodian Ida Mae Ford, a mother and grandmother, was on the street near her home when she was murdered by a stranger allegedly on a killing spree.
Ford, who was shot to death Jan. 8 was Bibb County's first homicide of 2018.
Adams was the 16th person to die in less than five months.
"These young innocent children are getting killed," Adams' step-grandfather Charles Butler said. "She got snuffed out of her life, and she didn't even get to live her life."
The family doesn't know the young man she was with, although they've learned the two were texting during the night.
They are convinced he was the target.
Authorities did not release his name because of his age.
His Jeep was still running in the street with its busted out passenger side window when deputies arrived.
Hayward and Butler are outraged that the surviving teen isn't talking much about what happened to their girl who loved to read and was a whiz with computers.
He didn't even give authorities her name before he was taken to Medical Center, Navicent Health.
Adams, who once attended Westside High School, was set to graduate with her GED this summer, they said.
"Now we've got to cool her brothers down, and you can't talk to these youngsters," Hayward said. "They started something that's not going to end until someone else gets hurt."
"Where do you move to be safe now?" Butler asked. "It ain't just Macon. It's everywhere. We kill each other like it's nothing now. Black on black."
That morning, after several shots rang out in Davis Homes, mothers and their children dressed in pajamas were standing in the street.
The shell casings littered the pavement at the corner of Leaf Court where at least seven evidence markers were later placed by a crime scene technician.
The women talked about the violence throughout Macon.
"Now it's really close to home," one of the women said. "There are so many kids around here."
They worried about the young family in the unit surrounded by crime scene tape.
Investigators believe Adams was seeking help at that apartment when she collapsed at the front door.
Hayward, her stepfather, says his family is heartbroken.
Grief overshadowed the birth of his new grandchild born about five hours after Adams was killed.
If only she had stayed at the hospital like she was supposed to, her mother said.
Adams' step-grandfather said: "She was just in the wrong place at the wrong time."
"Things just happening in Macon that's senseless, the killing of young, innocent women because of what men are doing out there in the streets," Hayward said.
He still can't believe she's dead.
"She was in there dancing last night, and she's gone today."