Despite mom’s pleas, death of daughter dumped in DeKalb creek unsolved

Tekeila Calloway

Tekeila Calloway

In July, Mary Jones did what mothers do after their child is killed, after someone steals their life in a cruel and public way and no one gets arrested.

Through tears and a collapsing void, Jones spoke:

“Justice is what I want,” she said, choking and sobbing. “It will be served.” She kept repeating the last part: “It will be served.”

Months later, the death of Tekeila Calloway, a 35-year-old hairdresser and masseuse, remains unsolved. In late June, she was found shot and left in three feet of water in Barbashela Creek, not far from Redan High.

This week, a spokeswoman for DeKalb County police, Shiera Campbell, said the agency has “no leads” in the case and is considering partnering with Crime Stoppers to get more attention to the story.

She said it still isn’t even clear where Calloway was killed before ending up in the creek. She lived in Gainesville, some 55 miles away, as she had most of her life.

At least one theory has emerged: “Detectives believe that it may be gang-related,” Campbell said.

Jones said Thursday she too fears her daughter’s death could’ve been related to Calloway’s gang ties.

She knew Calloway, who’d been a cheerleader and member of the color guard in school, ended up associating with gang members about a year before her death. Calloway told her mother.

“This gang thing is going to get you two things: dead or in prison,” Jones recalls telling the 35-year-old.

Since Calloway’s death, the mother has stayed engaged and tried to push the police to keep pushing for answers.

“It’s hard,” Jones said. “I don’t want to accept that she’s gone and she’s not coming back.”

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