MOCKSVILLE, N.C. (WGHP) — People cried, embraced and said prayers as they held a vigil for a 26-year-old mother killed in a case of mistaken identity.
Davie County deputies say Quintia Miller was shot outside an apartment by Harold Reid, Jr., 78, who thought Miller was the woman getting ready to testify against him for a sex offense and taking indecent liberties with a child.
This happened at the Rowan Pointe Apartments on Willhaven Drive in Mocksville.
Friends and family of Miller told FOX8 she had a beautiful smile and always had something nice to say to everyone. She leaves behind a six-year-old son and a community of friends who gathered Monday night to honor her.
“In this moment, Father protect us…and this world,” said a lady who attended the vigil.
The vigil started with a prayer, then people sang a gospel song.
More than 30 people gathered near the spot where Miller was shot and killed less than 24 hours after it happened. Tea lights lined the sidewalk where the memorial in her memory sat surrounded by dozens of flower bouquets.
Friends and family members held candles and one by one, shared thoughts about the 26-year-old mother.
“Today someone lost their life,” said Eugenia Ijames, Miller’s neighbor. “A mother lost their daughter. A child lost their mother. Siblings lost their sister. And we lost a dear, dear friend.”
Ijames helped organize the vigil.
“With it being so close to home and with her having a child that was so small and with so many people in the neighborhood knowing her, we just felt it was the right thing to do,” she said.
Her grandchildren often play around the complex with Miller’s son.
“Our kids feel free to just come outside and play because they feel safe. But after today, you just don’t know how safe they are anymore,” Ijames said.
The scariest part for Ijames was that anyone could have been struck by those bullets.
“This mother died today because [a man] was looking for someone else, and it’s senseless,” she said.
FOX8 crews also spoke with the woman who believes she was Reid’s intended target. Shavonne Barnes was involved in the sexual assault case against Reid.
Barnes said she knew he was dangerous but never would have expected he would take an innocent person’s life.