Thomasville family speaks out on carjacking death

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By: Noelani Mathews | WCTV Eyewitness
June 12, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- During a time of heartbreak, Yolanda Bradshaw's family is choosing to remember good times.

"Like my dad has said before, she's just gone to the store. She'll be back. I just say that in my head over and over," says Willie Bradshaw Jr., Yolanda's son.

But, Willie Jr. says that's not always easy. Since his mother's death, he's been facing several rumors, including that he knew the man who attacked her.

"They're not respecting me, my kids, and mainly my son. I mean, he's the one taking it harder than anyone," says Willie Bradshaw Sr., Yolanda's husband.

It's a night Willie Jr., can't seem to shake.

He says he did not know the carjacker before he was attacked and his mom was murdered right in front of him.

"I'd never do anything to hurt my mom. That's the biggest thing now that's really eating me up," says Willie Jr.

"You did what you had to do. You protected your mom and she was protecting you," Willie Sr. says to his son.

The Thomasville Rose Garden is just across the street from where the incident happened at Southern Pines. It's where the family says they're planning to honor her memory with a candlelight vigil.

Memories, not as a victim of a crime, but instead, memories as a mother, wife and public servant.

"Her legacy has been to trust God even when it doesn't make sense," says Bradshaw's family.

They say Yolanda Bradshaw's funeral will be held Saturday. A candlelight vigil is also planned later this week.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
June 10, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- A man accused of murdering a woman during a carjacking has been denied bond.

Lavontary Jones, 26, appeared before a judge Sunday morning, the Thomasville Police Department confirms.

Jones is charged with theft by taking, felony murder, vehicular homicide and DUI, as authorities believe he was under the influence of a substance during the incident.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
June 9, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- One man is under arrest after a woman died during a carjacking.

Officers with the Thomasville Police Department responded to a call at the Southern Pines Assisted Living Facility on Covington Avenue early Saturday.

Yolanda Bradshaw, 45, was getting off of work as an assistant to a resident when Lavontary Jones, 26, attempted to steal her car.

Police say the son was inside the vehicle and waiting to pick her up, when Jones first attacked Bradshaw's son.

During the struggle, police said Jones gained control of the car and ran Bradshaw over. She was reportedly pinned underneath.

When police arrived, they said they found Bradshaw trapped underneath the car with Jones still sitting inside the vehicle. Bradshaw later died from her injuries.

Jones is charged with theft by taking, felony murder, vehicular homicide and DUI, as authorities believe he was under the influence of a substance during the incident.

Christy Cooke, the Executive Director at Southern Pines Assisted Living Facility, released the following statement:

First and foremost, we would like to extend our sympathy to the family and friends impacted by this tragic event. While she was not an employee of Southern Pines, we understand how something like this not only impacts our associates and residents but also the local community.

The optimum care and safety of our residents here at Southern Pines is, and always has been, our primary concern and goal. We take the well being of all of our residents very seriously and Southern Pines is committed to going above and beyond to assure the highest level of service and safety is provided.

We are happy to hear that those involved in this incident are now in custody and are assisting the authorities in gathering all the necessary information regarding this matter.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
June 9, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) - The Thomasville Police Department is currently investigating a homicide at the Southern Pines Assisted Living Facility.

TPD reports the incident happened Saturday around 1:00 a.m.

Authorities say a woman was involved in a carjacking, where she was run over by a car and died underneath it. A suspect is in custody for the homicide.

This is a developing story.