TAMPA — Ashley Alexander fought back tears as she faced a half-dozen TV cameras at the Tampa Police Headquarters on Tuesday afternoon.
The mother held a picture of her slain daughter, 14-year-old Nilexia Alexander, and pleaded with those who have information about her killer: Come forward to the Tampa Police Department.
“I want whoever did this to my baby to be brought to justice,” Ashley Alexander said. “If anybody knows anything, saw anything, heard anything, please contact the Tampa Police Department.”
Nilexia Alexander, a runaway from Temple Terrace, was found dead about 4 a.m. Friday on the 100 block of West Floribraska Avenue. A 911 call said that multiple shots were fired and, by the time police arrived, only her body remained. No arrest has been made yet in the case.
Police struggled to identify the teen initially but did so Saturday after releasing a photo of a tattoo on her forearm.
No new details about the case were available Tuesday, said a department spokesperson.
Police said Saturday the teen was known to spend time in the Jackson Heights area when she left her home in Temple Terrace.
Ashley Alexander said Tuesday she wanted nothing more than to see her daughter one more time. She said her daughter loved drawing and reading books. More than anything, however, she was a “girly girl” who loved lip gloss, having different hairstyles and trying on new outfits.
Before being consoled by detectives behind her, Ashley Alexander begged for anyone with information to come forward. Detectives ask that anyone who saw Nilexia Alexander the past few days call the Tampa Police Department’s non-emergency line at (813) 231-6130.
A vigil for Nilexia is planned for 6 p.m. Wednesday on the 100 block of Floribraska Avenue, where the shooting took place.
“You should not have to bury your baby,” said Ashley Alexander. “You should never have to bury your child.”