Shanika S. Minor, who was on the FBI’s “most wanted” fugitives list after being accused of killing a nine-months-pregnant Milwaukee woman and then fleeing, has been captured in North Carolina, authorities said Friday.
The FBI placed the 24-year-old on its most wanted list earlier this week. She had been missing since the March 6 death of Tamecca Perry and her unborn child, authorities said.
Minor was captured at a motel near the airport in Fayetteville, N.C., early Friday morning, the FBI office in Milwaukee announced.
Shanika S. Minor is seen in an undated picture from the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List. (FBI handout via Reuters)
Perry’s unborn child was due within the week of the shooting.
The FBI said the incident began as an argument over loud music and perceived disrespect between two former high school classmates, then escalated into violence.
According to the FBI, Minor is only the 10th woman to be on its top 10 fugitives list. The agency considered Minor “armed and extremely dangerous” and said that she may have had contact with people in Missouri, Mississippi, Texas, Tennessee, Ohio and Georgia.
Someone had placed a call reporting the whereabouts of the fugitive, according to the FBI. “The caller said Minor was staying at a motel near the airport in Fayetteville, North Carolina.”
That information was received at 1:28 a.m. on Friday by the Cumberland County Emergency Communications Center. “The caller was able to give a description of Minor to aid in identifying her” and said she was staying in room 122 of the Airport Inn, the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office said in a release.
Deputies went to the room and “confronted” the woman inside, the office said. By 2:08 a.m., they determined the woman was, in fact, Minor.
She was taken into custody without incident and is is currently being held at the Cumberland County Detention center, according to the FBI.
“Milwaukee FBI [Special Agent in Charge] Robert Shields and Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn would like to thank the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office for their quick response and arrest of Shanika S. Minor and the public for their assistance in this investigation,” the FBI said in a release.
The incident began on March 5, when Minor confronted Perry. Minor’s mother lived in the same duplex as Perry and had told Minor about the neighbor playing loud music at unreasonable hours, according to the FBI.
Minor approached Perry on the sidewalk, brandishing a gun and challenging the woman to a fight, the FBI said. Minor’s mother ran to the scene and begged her daughter not to hurt the pregnant woman, the FBI said, but Minor fired the gun in the air and took off in a car.
“Most people who witnessed the incident thought that was the end of it,” FBI special agent Chad Piontek said in a statement
Then, in the early morning hours of March 6, Minor allegedly returned to the neighborhood and confronted Perry in the hallway near the back of the pregnant woman’s home.
“Minor’s mother again ran to the scene, this time positioning herself between her daughter and the neighbor, trying to keep the peace,” the FBI said in a news release. “Witnesses said Minor reached over her mother’s shoulder and fired her gun, striking the woman in the chest.”
Perry, fatally wounded, quickly retreated back inside of her home, where she died in front of her two children, the FBI said. Her unborn child, whom relatives told local media was a girl, died before paramedics arrived.
Police issued an arrest warrant for Minor, charging her with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide — one for Perry’s death and one for her unborn child’s death.
“The brutal murder of a mother and her unborn child is reprehensible,” Robert Shields, FBI Milwaukee Division special agent, said in a statement this week.
Hours after the FBI added Minor to its most wanted list, Perry’s mother pleaded for her daughter’s alleged killer to turn herself in to authorities.
“Wherever you at Shanika, I would appreciate it if you would come,” Cynthia Freeman told Fox affiliate WITI. “I don’t want you to get hurt. I just want you to come forward.”
She added: “I just want her caught so I can rest. I don’t sleep. I don’t eat. I really want to know the reason why she would pull a gun out and do what she did to my daughter.”