PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — On Saturday night in Lawncrest, a woman and her unborn child were killed. She was returning from her baby shower and was unloading gifts when she was gunned down.
On Monday night, friends of 32-year-old Jessica Covington gathered at the Lawncrest Rec Center to release purple and white balloons to honor the woman affectionately nicknamed “Rabbit” for her big smile and who was seven months pregnant when she was killed Saturday.READ MORE: Triple Shooting In Kensington Leaves 2 Men Dead, Another Injured, Philadelphia Police Say
Covington’s baby girl was due in January and friends say she was elated to be a first-time mom. She is one of two women murdered in targeted shootings in Philadelphia just two days apart.
“I’m talking about a smile from a mile away,” Teesh Adams, a friend of Covington, said. “She was so happy to become a mom, so happy to become a mom.”
Police say Covington was ambushed and killed Saturday night as the mother-to-be was unloading baby shower gifts outside her Lawncrest home when she was shot several times.
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner appeared emotional at a news conference Monday and announced “this is a case with a $50,000 reward.”
“She was transported to Einstein, where she was pronounced. Her child was pronounced, too,” he said.
Tina Campbell met Covington through the rec center’s teen activities program more than 20 years ago.
“She was just a sweetheart. Jessica was a loved, well respected and respectful young lady,” Campbell said.
Campbell’s one of many stunned to hear reports the incident may be domestic and that the killer or killers targeted her abdomen.READ MORE: Car Catches Fire In Old City After Crash, Leaves 1 Person Hospitalized
“Domestic violence, that’s shocking, but domestic violence is shocking,” Campbell said.
As the investigation continues, so too do so many questions.
“I don’t want to understand it, but I know right now, she is in a better place,” Campbell said.
In a separate domestic-related shooting in the city, authorities said Donavan Crawford turned himself in Monday afternoon. He’s accused of gunning down his ex-girlfriend, 24-year-old Sykea Patton, in front of her twin 4-year-old boys in West Philadelphia Friday.
“She was a good girl. She worked, she made sure her kids had a roof over their head,” said Janet Cannon, the victim’s mother.
Her grieving family says the deadly shooting happened days after Crawford had proposed to Patton before a fight erupted between the two.
“How can you confess to love someone and five days later you take their life? That’s not a human,” said Joseph Patton, the victim’s father.
Eyewitness News has also discovered a troubling trend, finding there have been 36 domestic-related homicides in Philly this year. That’s double from last year.
“The women now, it’s nothing to hear about a woman being shot. Once upon a time, they were off-limits,” said Colwin Williams with Philadelphia Cure Violence.MORE NEWS: Crews Battle House Fire In Doylestown, Bucks County
CBS3’s Matt Petrillo and Alicia Roberts contributed to this report.