FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Danielle Carter is the only survivor of a triple shooting early Thursday morning. Days after the three women were gunned down in front of a home in the 200 block of Sherwood Terrace, Carter is awake and talking.
Kayla Harris, 24, was killed along with her friend Nicole Saylor, 36. Harris’ cousin, Danielle Carter, remains in critical condition.
The women had just left work, and were going to Harris’ home when a gunman ambushed them. They did not make it to the front porch. Police responded to the reported shooting around 4 a.m. Saylor was pronounced dead at the scene, Harris died on the way to the hospital, and Carter was rushed to the hospital for treatment.
“It still feels very, very much like a nightmare,” said Tiffany Butler. “It’s really hard to grasp.”
Butler, Carter’s aunt, said she has undergone three surgeries and the family expects she will have several more. Butler said she was shot several times. Her arm and pelvis is shattered, her leg is broken, and bullets went through major organs. One bullet just missed her heart, Butler said.
“They’re literally having to rebuild my niece,” she said. “This is not a TV show. She is probably going to be half metal by the time this is over.”
Butler described her niece as “tough” and said she woke up on Saturday, just two days after the shooting.
“She opened her eyes she saw her parents and she just told them everything,” said Butler. “Unfortunately she remembers. We were hoping she wouldn’t. Nobody needs to remember that.”
Carter’s parents are the only people allowed to visit her in the hospital right now. Police have her in protective custody. Carter’s vivid memory of the horrific scene could be the key to getting justice. Police have not released information about a suspect publicly, however Butler said they’re working diligently behind the scenes to solve the case and protect the only surviving witness.
“I have not yet been able to go in and see her,” she said. “Nobody is able to go see her and I’m grateful for that.”
She says Carter is grateful to be alive and her family is hopeful she will make a full recovery. She will likely spend a year in the hospital and will have to continue physical therapy after that. Carter did not have insurance so the family is trying to raise money* to cover her hospital costs.
“I know that she’s just talked so much about how much she loves everybody and she misses her kids.”
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