After teen's murder, family again turns to community for help

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The parents of an 18-year-old from Bradenton wondered Monday whether the bullets that killed their daughter were meant for someone else.

Jan Goode said her daughter, Moriah, was with a friend and sitting in her car on 4th Street East Sunday afternoon when someone opened fire.

The friend rushed Moriah to the hospital, where she died.

"She's so young and so vibrant. How can you take a life like that? How can you make sense of taking a life like that? There's no sense to it," Goode said.

Goode told FOX 13 her daughter loved her car; she'd saved up to buy it. It was also the first thing Goode saw when she got to the hospital.

"Her car was parked front with bullet holes all in it," Goode recalled.

The shooter got away. Manatee County deputies aren't yet saying whether they have a suspected motive, but detectives are looking into whether Moriah was an innocent victim.

"She was with another person who could have been the target but we can't say for sure right now," said Dave Bristow, a spokesperson for the sheriff's office.

Moriah didn't have an easy life; Goode said Moriah's biological mother was pregnant when she left Haiti for the U.S.  Moriah was given up for adoption and, when she was just one day old, the Goodes adopted her.

She went on to become a decorated young athlete until she suddenly became so ill that she could barely get out of bed. After Moriah was diagnosed with Lupus, the community helped raise $30,000 for her treatments.

Goode is asking the community to help again.

"This is my baby girl. She's not here anymore. I need you guys to help me find her killer," she said.
"If you're the person that shot my baby, I forgive you. I forgive you. But please come forward and  turn yourself in, give us some closure. Help us heal. Help us heal from this."

Detectives have several leads and are re-interviewing witnesses. Anyone with information is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

The family has set up a fundraising page for funeral expenses: