Mother ‘stunned’ after man pleads guilty to her daughter’s murder

Senaca James
Senaca James(WPTA)
Updated: Oct. 21, 2021 at 9:23 AM EDT
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) - A Fort Wayne mother is still stunned that one of the teens charged in her daughter’s murder abruptly cut his trial short to plead guilty.

“I was speechless. I was happy that he took ownership for his involvement and what he did with my daughter,” Brandy Parrish said.

Her 18-year-old daughter Dominique Taylor was gunned down in December of 2019.

During a break in the first day of testimony in his murder trial, Senaca James told the judge he wanted to plead guilty, saying he and another person shot the teen. James was 16 when he shot Taylor as she waited for friends in a car in the parking lot of the Villa Capri Apartments.

“While we’re grieving and hurting from the pain of the loss of our daughter, he took it like a joke. Laughing from the courtroom, gang signs from his homies in the back, blowing kisses to his family,” Parrish said.

Parrish says it’s about time he took responsibility, and while she’s thankful he admitted what he did, she says she hasn’t seen any remorse.

“Do I think that he feels sorry for what he did to my daughter? No, I don’t. No, I don’t. I don’t think he feels sorry for what he did to my daughter,” she said.

She credits strong evidence collected by detectives and presented by prosecutors for perhaps prompting James to cut his trial short. With no plea agreement in place, James faces up to 85 years in prison when he’s sentenced on December 3.

“My daughter was an innocent victim, and we need to protect society and keep him in there,” Parrish said.

James’s co-defendant, Dawann Martin, was 15 at the time of the shooting and faces the same counts -- murder and using a gun to do it. His trial is scheduled to begin on February 1.

Dawann Martin
Dawann Martin(Allen Co. Sheriff's Department)

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