Teen recounts finding her mother shot to death on Johns Island

Published: Feb. 17, 2013 at 2:10 AM EST|Updated: Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:09 PM EST
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Timothy Wright (Source: CCDC)
Timothy Wright (Source: CCDC)
Bullet holes on back of home.
Bullet holes on back of home.
Melinda Ford.
Melinda Ford.

JOHNS ISLAND, SC (WCSC) - Melinda Ford loved taking her teenage daughters on shopping trips. The three of them would drive from Johns Island to downtown Charleston for the outings and one of those trips may have been in the works this past weekend.

Instead, Ford's oldest daughter came home from work to find her mother shot to death in the family's backyard.

"I thought I heard her breathing and I thought she would have recovered from it," said Ford's 19-year-old daughter Chrisshon.

But no matter how much pressure she put on the bullet wounds and how many compressions she did at the dispatchers request, her mother wasn't coming back.

"I was shocked," says Chrisshon.

The Charleston County Sheriff's Office has charged a North Charleston man in the woman's murder.

Authorities say around 1 a.m., 34-year-old Timothy Wright of North Charleston surrendered to a deputy in the area of Dunmovin Park, several hours after Ford was found dead on Betsy Kerrison Parkway.

Wright was taken into custody and transported to an area hospital for a self-inflicted gunshot wound that authorities say occurred at the residence after shooting Ford. As of Feb. 19 Wright remains in the hospital and it is unknown when he will be released, according to sheriff's office spokesman Major Jim Brady.

After hearing that Wright was arrested and suspected of shooting her mother, Chrisshon didn't know what to think.

"The way he seemed around us, he didn't seem like that type of person at all," she said.

Deputies responded to Ford's home around 6:30 p.m. Saturday after receiving multiple calls to 911. When they showed up, deputies located a Ford a few steps away from her back porch laying on the ground.

Neighbors told investigators Wright had fled the area in a white truck. When a responding officer tried to pull over a suspect truck along Bohicket Road, the truck fled through the gates of the ball field off of Dunmovin Road, investigators say. Wright then allegedly fled on foot.

Deputies, K-9 and helicopters were involved in the search for Wright.

Wright is being charged with murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime.

Authorities say Wright is expected to be in the hospital for a few days. The sheriff's office is continuing the investigation.

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