JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. - A Jacksonville mother spoke for the first time Monday about a shooting last week that left her 25-year-old daughter paralyzed. She's pleading for two suspects at large to turn themselves in to police.
Iesha Mann was shot in the back when she was caught in the crossfire of a gang-related shooting in Jacksonville Beach. She was walking her dog near the intersection Third Avenue South and Seventh Street South the night of Oct. 15 when she was struck by the gunfire.
IMAGES: Family photos of Iesha Mann
Daniel Jarrett, 17, was also shot and was later arrested on attempted murder charges. His injuries were non-life-threatening. Police said 19-year-old Denard Robinson and 35-year-old Vernon Robinson are still at large, wanted on attempted murder charges. Police said Jarrett and Denard Robinson are documented members of known gangs, but not Vernon Robinson.
"She's paralyzed from the waist down. The bullet is still in her spine," Josephine Mann said of her daughter. "They can't remove the bullet. Right now if they tried, it would do more damage than good. They're waiting for the swelling to go down to see how much movement she'll get back."
Investigators said an argument between Jarrett, Denard Robinson, who also goes by "Scooter," and Vernon Robinson, also known as "Yodi," prompted the shooting. (All are pictured right in order.)
"She's holding up better than I am," Josephine Mann said. "The first thing she said is, 'I'm just glad I'm alive.'"
Iesha recently moved to Jacksonville Beach to raise her two sons, 2-year-old Tramain and 8-year-old Jeremiah. While her mother says the boys are keeping her daughter strong and focused on recovery, what's happened has been difficult for them to understand.
"He said, 'Mommy, I'm glad that that bullet didn't kill you, because if it killed you, it would've killed me, and I don't want to live without you,'" Josephine said.
Iesha is expected to move to Brooks Rehab Center later this week. Her mother says she's relying on her faith to pull her through.
"She says don't cry for her, pray for her," Josephine said. "She needs your prayers more than she needs your tears."
The family has established a fund at Bank of America to help raise money for her medical bills and therapy. To donate, contact the bank and specify the Iesha Mann Donation Fund, account No. 229046801374.
Anyone with information on the suspects' whereabouts is asked to call the Jacksonville Beach Police Department at 904-270-1667 or Crime Stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.
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