Jillian Ludwig was a freshman at Belmont University in Nashville
Jillian Ludwig, 18, a student at Belmont University, was struck by a bullet fired from across the street from the park where she was walking on the track last Tuesday, the Nashville Metro Police Department says. She died from her injuries a day later.
“There’s a piece of my heart that was taken from me,” Jillian’s mother, Jessica, said on GMA.
Police allege that Shaquille Taylor was shooting at a car and one of the bullets hit Ludwig in the head. Taylor was arrested and charged with aggravated assault and tampering with evidence, according to jail records. His bond is set at $280,000.
The department said modified charges against Taylor were possible Ludwig's death. It is not clear if he has retained an attorney or entered a plea.
NBC News, ABC News and WSMV report that Taylor was previously charged with assault with a deadly weapon in an unrelated incident, but the charges were dismissed after he was ruled incompetent to stand trial.
“A repeat criminal who’s deemed to have mental health issues should be dealt with in a facility,” Jillian’s father, Matt, said on GMA. “The answer should not be to release them back into the streets.”
Jillian, originally from New Jersey, was a musician who played in multiple bands.
"Jillian is an engaged member of our community who is known for her love of music," Belmont University President Greg Jones said in a statement, reported by ABC News. "A music business major and bass player, she is often found at concerts, cheering on fellow musicians and using music as a way to connect with those around her. Jillian is also an avid runner who enjoys being outside."
A GoFundMe to raise money Jillian’s family has collected over $117,000 in donations.
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