NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - The day before her daughter Nia was shot and killed, Kim Lassai said she had to console the 21-year-old who was was distraught about a man who was gunned down on Bunker Hill Road.
“She was crying about how long they took to get the boy up,” Lassai said.
Neither knew at that time, but Nia would suffer the same fate, on that same street, less than a week later.
Lassai said the night of her daughter’s death, Nia got in a car with a couple of girlfriends and left. She said there was no indication her daughter was feuding with anyone or was looking for trouble that night.
“She was coming to hang out with friends, enjoy herself, my neighbor said she saw her coming out the door a big smile on her face,” said Lassai.
The shooting was reported not long after Nia left the house that night. She was pronounced dead at the scene, just blocks away from her home.
Lassai said her daughter was a kind and loving person.
“She loved children, she fed the homeless, animals, she was very spiritual," Lassai said. “That’s why I can stand here and say she went to heaven, she was very spiritual.”
Lassai said her daughter had big dreams and was working to be a rapper and model. But as a small memorial sits near the place she was shot and killed, Lassai said she still has no answers after her daughter’s life was cut short.
“It’s just sad, they took my baby’s life over jealousy, for no reason,” Lassai said.
NOPD said the investigation remains ongoing and has not named a suspect or potential motive. However, Lassai believes her daughter’s beauty, in part, contributed to the shooting.
“When she first came around here, a lot of girls were jealous because she was going to take the boys they already had, and it was jealousy. I would be lying if I tried to make up another story,” Lassai said. “You have to be careful being so pretty.”
Lassai fears the person responsible in her daughter's death is living feet from her, and just wants to keep others from suffering the way Nia did.
“If you’re a killer and you’re out on these street you need to be caught,” Lassai said.
NOPD asks anyone with information about Nia’s death to call Crimestoppers at 504-822-1111.