LAPD Seeks Witnesses to Slaying of South LA Mother

Shonte McDaniel was home with her daughter when a gunman opened fire on the house.

At 5:30 in the afternoon, the 9400 block of South Main Street in South LA is busy any day of the week, and the Los Angeles Police Department says that was no different on October 19, 2015.

That's when they say someone fired multiple rounds through a metal security door of a home there, killing a woman in side.

"It's hard man, it's really hard," Kevin Stevenson says of his little sister's murder. "Shonte was a loving child, man. Growing up, she was the best sister you could ever have."

Forty-two-year-old Shonte McDaniel was a mother and grandmother. She was home alone with her daughter when the shooting happened.

Crime scene photos released for the first time show the spray of bullet holes piercing the metal security door. Some traveled across the living room and into a wall. Some made their way all the way down the hall and into a bathroom, lodging into concrete tiles and shattering glass doors on the shower.

Stevenson says McDaniel had gathered family and friends to the home just hours earlier.

"Funny thing about it is my brother came over, my cousin, my other cousin," Stevenson says, "and we were never just together like that at one time at her house, but this time for some reason, we were, not knowing it was going to be the last time I see her."

LAPD South Bureau Homicide Detective John Jamison says the story plays out on multiple surveillance videos they've obtained in the area.

"It was a busy day," Detective Jamison says. "The recycling plant was open that day, the garage door business was open. There were a lot of people out."

The problem for detectives, though, is getting those witnesses to come forward. Stevenson says he understands why so few are willing to talk to police.

"They're afraid," he says, "they fear for their lives if they say something, and if that person goes to jail then their family or friends are gonna come and try to get them and vice versa, so they're afraid."

But the LAPD says that's the only way they'll be able to nab the killer and keep him off the streets for good.

"We know that witnesses saw what happened," Jamison says, "the problem is obviously getting a hold of them or getting people to cooperate as far as what they saw that day."

For a family shattered by the murder, they say they hang onto hope that someone will have the courage to come forward, and the hope that the killer will get what's coming to him.

"It would give us some relief, it would really help us," Stevenson says. "We could put it all to rest then."

Anyone with information is asked to call LAPD South Bureau Homicide at 323-786-5113. Callers can remain anonymous.

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