Cousin arrested in teen girl's murder

October 1, 2008 3:51:39 PM PDT
Police have arrested a 15-year-old in the Tuesday murder of a 16-year-old girl in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. The 15-year-old girl charged with murder is described by family as a little girl who looks even younger than she is.

They do say she is a chronic runaway, but didn't know she was capable of this.

"I really believe she looked at my daughter as a role model," Marva Braithwaite said.

She was talking about her cousin and now the murder suspect in her only child's death.

Shannon Braithwaite died from 29 stab wounds Tuesday night at the hands, police said, of her blood relative, Tiana Browne.

It happened inside the victim's home, an apartment on Empire Boulevard, where not even two days ago the Braithwaites welcomed the girl to stay.

"She would always ask my daughter questions. Problems she was having," Marva explained.

She is strong today, but Tuesday night relatives screamed in horror on Empire Boulevard after the child was discovered slashed and stabbed repeatedly.

Police said she came home from work to Shannon's lifeless body still pressed up against the inside apartment door. Police point out the fire escape as the murderer's exit.

Shannon is described as a happy, straight A student at Vanguard High School in Manhattan. She had high hopes of possibly working as a psychologist someday.

"I said, 'Baby, don't worry. God has your steps ordered. Take it one step at a time,'" Marva said. "Her own family killed her blood relative. Her cousin killed her," grandmother Juliet Waugh said.

Police said Tiana Browne allegedly made some admissions linking her to the crime.

They also say upon the arrest they discovered she had stolen several of Shannon's belongings.

She was charged with murder and theft.

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REPORTED BY: Emily Smith

WEB PRODUCED BY: Bob Monek

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