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Arrest of homicide suspect brings some relief to Desire Hughes' family, but grief and questions remain

"Why? That's what I want an answer to. Why? Why did he have to go to the guns? I just want to know why my baby's life had to be taken."

TOLEDO, Ohio — A suspect is in jail, charged with murder in the shooting death of a 7-month-old girl. But a family still has so many unanswered questions.

The family of Desire Hughes, a little girl who was shot while riding with her father in a car, was informed of an arrest in her case Tuesday night.

Credit: Angela Cattladge
7-month-old Desire Hughes was killed in a drive-by shooting April 27, 2022, in west Toledo.

Her great-grandmother and grandmother shared what the family hopes for following the arrest.

"I screamed, I cried and I was able to breathe just a little bit better," Desire's grandmother, Angela Cattladge, said. 

A suspect is in custody after seven long days.

According to court documents, 22-year-old Jadiah Carter, now charged with murder, admitted to the shooting during an interview with police.

RELATED: Neighbor's Ring camera helped identify suspect in shooting death of 7-month-old girl, Toledo police chief says

Credit: Angela Cattladge
Family photo of Desire Hughes.

Cattladge said there's a little bit of relief.

But she and Desire's great-grandmother, Suzette Cowell, are still reeling from the grief.

"When you see people on TV and they're going through this, you say 'oh my goodness, this is so unbelievable.' But we're here sitting in those seats. We never thought we'd be sitting in those seats," Cowell said. "It's a hurt like you can't even imagine."

Along with the pain of loss, the family has unanswered questions.

"Why were they shooting in the first place? Why? That's what I want an answer to: Why? Why did he have to go to the guns?" Cattladge said. "I just want to know why my baby's life had to be taken."

The grandmothers remember Desire as a cheerful and loving baby.

Credit: Angela Cattladge
7-month-old Desire Hughes was killed in a drive-by shooting April 27, 2022, in west Toledo.

They describe the pain her mother is going through, knowing her baby is gone. 

"She's doing the best that she can do under the circumstances. She's thankful that he was caught," Cowell said, "but she's just doing the best she can do."

Fed up with these senseless killings, their voices join the call for an end to gun violence.

"It has to stop, for me. It has to, because these shootings are just getting out of control," Cattladge said. "And it's not fair to the families that have to live behind all these shootings and grieve and hurt. Yeah, it's not fair to us."

The family said they did not know the shooter.

Right now, Cowell says the focus needs to be on community healing.

If you have information about crimes you can call or text Crime Stoppers at 419-255-1111. You can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward.

Credit: Angela Cattladge
7-month-old Desire Hughes was killed in a drive-by shooting April 27, 2022, in west Toledo.
Credit: Angela Cattladge
Family photo of Desire Hughes.

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