Family of shooting victim speaks out after alleged killer found in California

Posted at 10:26 PM, Apr 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-13 22:59:57-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - The mother of a Virginia Beach man who was shot and killed in February says she's relieved after the alleged killer was found last week.

19-year-old Jayln Harris was fatally shot on 16th Street near Cypress Ave. the afternoon of February 13.

Police quickly identified two suspects, arresting 33-year-old Henry Smith III for accessory after the fact, but 30-year-old Andre'Jeru Bernard Bigby was still wanted for second degree murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Jayln Harris and daughter, Brielle

Bigby was arrested last week in Slab City, California, and is set to be extradited to Virginia.

"If you are going to run, I guess being somewhere where squatters live would make sense for you," said Lovey Vawters, Harris' mother. "I just hope somewhere in your heart, and your soul you can find a way to understand what you've done."

Vawters says her son was the father of a baby girl, Brielle, and that it's been a rough two months for the entire family.

"All this does is just start another part of the process that doesn't get us to a point of being able to grieve," she said. "I'm still walking around and up every morning, but I think my life kind of stopped in that moment."

But while she grieves, Vawters is honoring her son's memory with the Jayln D. Harris foundation, a non-profit she created to help teen and young adult parents like Jayln.

"Sometimes they need Pampers," she said. "A lot of places you go take you through a lot of red tape to get help. I want to have a place for them to come and feel safe enough to ask questions."

Vawters is holding a giveaway on April 21 from 2-3 p.m. at Twin Canal Village, where she will pass out diapers, baby clothes and more to honor her son.