Two arrests in drive-by shooting of 13-year-old

Levette Lipscomb and Brandon Townsend (Photos courtesy of the Durham Police Department)

May 18, 2012 2:20:32 PM PDT
Police announced Friday they have made two arrests in the drive-by shooting of a 13-year-old girl.

Detectives have charged 26-year-old Levette Lipscomb of North Briggs Ave. and 19-year-old Brandon Townsend - also of North Briggs - with murder.

It's been more than a year since Shakanah China died in front of her Atka Court apartment building May 10, 2011.

Right after the shooting, witnesses told police a green, older model Ford Windstar or Chevrolet Astro van came down Rochelle Street and someone inside the van fired several shots as the van approached Atka Court.

Detectives said they didn't believe the seventh-grader at Lakeview School in Durham was the intended target.

China's mother told ABC11 right after it happened that the first shot missed her daughter, but two more struck her. Demetriss China said the girl died in her arms.

"My daughter was on her phone texting, and I had seen a green van ride by and didn't pay any attention to it. But then 30 minutes later, the same green van came through and started shooting," she said.

Neighbors described the teen as a vibrant young girl who had dreams of becoming a nurse. She was often seen babysitting her younger siblings.

Lipscomb and Townsend were being held without bond.

Police said the investigation was still ongoing. They asked anyone with information to call Investigator Pate at (919) 560-4440, ext. 29332 or CrimeStoppers at (919) 683-1200. CrimeStoppers pays cash rewards for information leading to arrests in felony cases and callers never have to identify themselves.

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