A 29-year-old mother in Harlem was shot to death on Jan. 16 after confronting a man who accosted and groped her on the street, according to The New York Daily News.
Shadina Smith, a mother of a one-year-old son, was walking outside of her apartment around noon when she ran back inside to tell her fiancé that a man groped her.
Smith and her fiancé, 26, went back outside to confront the man and an argument ensued that led to a hail of gunfire.
The New York Daily News reported that Smith was hit in the chest three times and her fiancé was hit in the chest and arm while standing in the hallway of their apartment building.
Both were transported to Harlem Hospital but Smith was later pronounced dead. Her fiancé was eventually released from the hospital.
“It’s been a horrific nightmare situation. She was very invested in her son and his future. I hate that he won’t be able to know how wonderful and how resilient she was. She did not pout. We just want to make sure to give him all that love,” said Smith’s aunt, Corine Booker.
A Harlem mom was fatally shot after she and her boyfriend confronted a man who had just groped her on the street, police…
“Was she in pain, what was she thinking before she died? Was she cold? She was completely outgoing and full of life. She always had a really big smile on her face. She had a contagious spirit. She could get along with everybody. Everybody feels close to her, everybody was her best friend, everybody loved her. People really loved Shadina because she loved people. Sometimes not all bright lights can shine for a long time,” Booker added in an interview with the newspaper.
Booker said she had spoken with the unnamed fiancé about what happened and said she was close with Smith because her brother is Smith’s father. The two grew close because Booker is only a few years older than Smith.
According to her LinkedIn page, Smith worked as a cashier at Ashely Stewart.
““She leaves behind her precious baby boy. Dina was an amazing person with a big heart … She had a fire inside her which attracted anyone who crossed her path. She was funny, witty and had such a positive vibe,” friend Jamie Rentas said in a post about Smith, according to Yahoo News.
Police said they have not found the gunman but noted that he was shooting at the couple from outside of the building. The fiancé refused to speak to police, according to the local newspaper.
Dlbbo Tla told The New York Daily News last month that he was visiting a friend when he heard the shooting.
“I heard a ‘boom, boom, boom’ and that’s when I knew. This building used to be number one, you needed an ID and key to get in. Now it’s like the Holiday Inn, everyone comes in and out. This is just the beginning, they need to fix it,” Tla said.
The tragic case follows another instance of street harassment leading to outright violence against Black women. As Blavity previously reported, hundreds of people came out to protest in Harlem after another Black woman said she was brutally attacked, kicked and bitten outside of a liquor store one evening simply because she refused to allow two men to buy her wine.
More than a week later, the men were caught. But the woman’s horrific injuries shocked the entire neighborhood and prompted calls for men to not only show greater respect for Black women but to provide protection for those who may be vulnerable.
“If we don’t do it, who is? It’s our responsibility, our duty to protect women and children in our community,” Omar Jackson, director of Stand Against Violence in East Harlem told CBS2 during the protest.
A GoFundMe page has been started by Smith’s family to help cover funeral expenses and help provide for her young son. It has raised more than $3,000 so far.
“Our beloved Shadina Smith Hall was supreme soul to everyone who knew her. She was a daughter, mother, wife, sister, aunt, godmother, and friend that meant so much to so many people she came in contact with,” family member Uriel Hall wrote.
“An act of senseless gun violence decided to disrupt the lives of everyone forever. Especially her parents who lost their only daughter, her husband Joshua and their son Uriel. The tragic event that took place impacted a whole community if not the world to us. However, who is even more greatly impacted in this tragedy is her one year old son Uriel. Having to go through the rest of his life without a mother, friend, provider, his everything is unimaginable,” Hall added.