Lexington homicide victim's family had worried about her relationship with the suspected killer

jkegley@herald-leader.comMarch 28, 2013 

On Tuesday, Jeffrey Jackson asked Quantina Reed's father for his blessing to take Reed's hand in marriage, her family said.

Less than 24 hours later, Reed's body was found in the garage of her home and Jackson was arrested in Dayton, Ohio, on a warrant charging him with Reed's murder.

The loss of her only daughter left Dale Reed and her family struggling for answers. Dale Reed, Quantina's mother, said nobody knows what prompted the fatal confrontation, or why things took such a sudden, violent turn.

"She was not only my daughter; she was my best friend," Dale Reed said Thursday as she prepared to meet with funeral directors. "We did everything together."

Police and paramedics found the body of Quantina Reed, 34, — "Quany" to her friends and family — in the garage of her home on Scottsdale Circle early Wednesday. She had been shot in the head. About six hours later, a U.S. Marshal's task force arrested Jackson, also 34, in a parking lot in Dayton, Ohio. Dale Reed said Jackson had driven Quantina Reed's Chrysler 300 to Dayton.

Quantina Reed is the second child Dale Reed has lost to gun violence. In 2001, one of her sons, Jeffrey Reed, was shot and killed on Merino Street. Timonte Harris, 33, was convicted of murder in 2002 and is serving a 30-year prison sentence.

One of Quantina Reed's last public Facebook posts was a memorial to her brother.

"Its not a day that goes by that we don't think of u and we love and miss u like crazy, but we know God only ask for special Angels," she wrote May 28. "Hold Heaven down until I get there."

Dale Reed described her daughter as a smart woman and a loving mother who was passionate about cars and enjoyed going out dancing with friends. On Wednesday, they were supposed to go Easter shopping for Quantina Reed's children and plan her brother's wedding.

Quantina Reed worked long hours as a housekeeper at Baptist Health Lexington hospital to provide for her 12-year-old son and 14-year-old daughter, who were at home in bed when the shooting occurred and didn't know that their mother had been shot, Dale Reed said.

The kids are now staying with Dale Reed and her husband, Quantina Reed's father, Jesse Mitchell.

Jackson and Quantina Reed had dated for about three months, Reed and Mitchell said. The family worried that the couple were taking things too quickly — Jackson was spending a lot of nights at Quantina Reed's house and had moved some of his belongings into her garage.

The family later heard stories about Jackson's violent past, including a 2012 assault charge in which police said he got into a drunken fight with another woman — a charge that was eventually dropped, according to court documents.

Quantina Reed seemed happy despite her family's objections, her mother said.

Jackson "started staying all night with her, cooking, cleaning, fixing stuff, taking her out to eat," Dale Reed said. "He made her feel special. She liked having a man around."

Jackson was being held in the Montgomery County, Ohio, jail without bond.

Josh Kegley: (859) 231-3197. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety.

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