Friday, February 15, 2013

East Knoxville, TN: Police: Man who shot pregnant woman armed and dangerous

A 19-year-old pregnant woman fatally shot on an East Knoxville residential street was killed by a boyfriend who remained at large Thursday night, police alleged.

Brandon Scott Donaldson, 22, of Knoxville was arguing with Marcia Crider as she sat in a parked car with her mother in the 3900 block of Porter Avenue when he opened fire on the pair Wednesday morning, according to Knoxville Police Department spokesman Darrell DeBusk.

Crider was struck multiple times. Her mother, whose name has not been released by police, was not injured.

Warrants were issued Thursday against Donaldson on charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder. Police also released his photograph and a warning to the public that Donaldson should be considered armed and dangerous. Bond on the charges has been set at $750,000.

An autopsy performed Thursday showed that Crider was 13 weeks pregnant, DeBusk said.

The spokesman said investigators understand that Donaldson apparently was not the father of the unborn child.

It will be up to prosecutors to decide whether to file any additional charge for the death of the fetus.

State law was amended last year to allow criminal prosecution for an assault against a pregnant woman that causes the death of a human embryo or fetus at any stage of gestation in utero. The law previously applied only to a viable fetus.

After the shooting, Crider's mother drove her daughter a couple of blocks to a pay phone to call E-911.

Emergency responders found the pair in the parking lot outside the Amvets Thrift Store, 4105 Holston Drive.

Crider was transported by ambulance to the University of Tennessee Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead Wednesday afternoon.

Investigators initially responded to the thrift store but quickly shifted their focus back to the shooting scene outside a house at 3941 Porter Ave.

Multiple shell casings littered the street where neighbors reported hearing as many as 10 shots fired.

Neither the victims nor the suspect lived at the address. DeBusk said Crider had some connection to the residence, although he declined to elaborate.

He also declined to detail the circumstances that preceded the shooting, characterizing it only as a domestic dispute.

Copies of the warrants against Donaldson were not immediately available Thursday afternoon.

"The mother was there to pick up the daughter and the argument escalated," DeBusk said.

Donaldson is described as a black male, 6 feet tall, 180 pounds, with black hair, brown eyes, a goatee and tattoos on his left and right forearms.

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