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Mother traveling with young daughter ambushed, killed after suspects allegedly lured her to ‘business’ meeting

Source: Tenessee Bureau of Investigation

Aug. 20 2021, Published 11:02 a.m. ET

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Three people are under arrest after they allegedly lured a mother to a remote area in Tennessee and then killed her, investigators said.

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On the evening of Aug. 9, the Hardeman County Sheriff’s Office responded to a shooting in a remote area north of Whiteville, where deputies discovered the body of Tatianna Delk, 26.

“The investigation revealed that the victim traveled to Whiteville, with her daughter, under the guise of conducting some business,” the sheriff’s office said.

Once the mother and daughter arrived, Jeremy Patterson, 37, Johnnie Tate, 33, and Shantell Essie, 28, allegedly ambushed and then murdered Delk. The minor child was physically unharmed in the shooting. Authorities have not said where the girl was found.

According to the sheriff’s office, the suspects then stole the victim's vehicle and other personal belongings. Deputies later recovered the vehicle, which was abandoned several miles from the crime scene.

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On August 13, authorities arrested Patterson, Tate and Essie and booked them each into the Hardeman County Jail on a first-degree murder charge.

Tate and Essie are being held on $350,000 bond, while Patterson’s was set at $496,000 due to outstanding warrants not connected to the murder.

The three are scheduled to appear in court on Aug. 31.


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