A 41-year-old man was charged with murder Monday in the shooting of a 27-year-old woman in the back on Thanksgiving as their 2-year-old daughter stood nearby.
Randall J. Watkins, of Minneapolis, was charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Raven B. Gant at her Minneapolis home.
Watkins remains jailed in lieu of $1 million bail ahead of his first court appearance Tuesday.
According to the criminal complaint:
Police went to the home in the 2600 block of N. James Avenue on a report of a domestic disturbance and shooting. Officers arrested Watkins at the door and took a loaded handgun from him.
Officers asked a 2-year-old girl in the home about her mother's whereabouts. The child said, "she's on the floor."
Gant was in the doorway between the kitchen and the dining room.
She died later that night at North Memorial Health Hospital. An autopsy revealed that she was shot once in the left side of her back.
Gant's father told police that his daughter called him at 10:08 p.m. and said Watkins was preventing her from leaving the house.
He and other witnesses told officers that Gant had been trying to get away from Watkins for a while and that Watkins had previously beaten her, resulting in two black eyes and other injuries.
Gant's father also said she and his granddaughter had been staying with him.
The father said he tried to confront Watkins about Gant's injuries, but Watkins shot him in the back.
Watkins, who told authorities that he was the child's father, had also taken all the clothes belonging to Gant and their daughter and would not return them.
However, earlier in the day, Watkins called Gant and told her she could meet him at the house at 9:30 p.m. and he would return all of her things.
A check of the man's criminal history turned up a handful of traffic infractions and one misdemeanor conviction for fifth-degree assault.