• $5K reward offered in search of gunman who killed pregnant Pine Hills mother

    By: Monique Valdes , Jason Kelly , Kelly Healey

    Updated:

    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - The search continued Tuesday for a gunman who shot and killed a pregnant driver and injured two children in Pine Hills, deputies said.

    The shooting happened at about 2:30 p.m. Monday on Gamble and Dunsford drives. Six people were inside a car when the shooting happened, deputies said.

    The driver, Imelda Francois, 21, was killed.  A 13-year-old girl, Dyanna Laurent, was shot in the arm and a 22-month-old child, Kameren Williams, was grazed by a bullet, deputies said. Francois’ boyfriend and two other children were also in the car, but they were not injured, deputies said.

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    "It appeared that the suspect vehicle was pursuing the (victim's) vehicle and targeted the vehicle for whatever reason," Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said.

    Francois died at a hospital, deputies said. Dyanna and Kameren remain in the hospital and are expected to survive, deputies said.

    La'Shonta Isley, who lives one block from where the shooting occurred, said she was on the phone with her son when she heard gunfire.

    "He was halfway down the street, and he was, like, 'I hear gunshots and people screaming, 'Help! help!'" she said. "But he didn't see anybody, so, I was, like, 'Just keep going.'"

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    Investigators said they’re talking to Francois’ boyfriend, who was also in the car and is Kameren's father.

    "Witnesses indicated a white older model Chevrolet Malibu sedan occupied by two black male subjects was seen fleeing the scene and is believed to be the suspect vehicle," Orange County Sheriff's Office spokesman Jeff Williamson said.

    WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said that under Florida law, the people responsible will face two felony murder charges for killing Francois and her unborn child. She was six months pregnant.

    Resident Tony Pinnock said Monday's violence was the second recent shooting in the area.

    "The other day, there was a shooting on Powers (Drive), just right behind my house. And today, this happened here," he said. "It's bad for the neighborhood. I wish somebody would do something about it."

    Resident Moses Edouard said he's trying to help Francois' relatives in any way he can, including by knocking on neighbors' doors to ask if they have surveillance cameras that deputies might not know about.

    "Think of it as if it was one of your family members," he said. "What would you want to be done, and how would we take further action in getting this matter solved and justice for that person? Because they cannot talk anymore. We have to be their voice and speak out for them."

    A vigil will be held Tuesday evening to pay tribute to Francois.

    Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call the Orange County Sheriff's Office or Crimeline at 800-423-8477. Callers could be eligible for a $5,000 reward. 

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