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Pregnant woman shot dead; toddler wounded

RIPLEY, Ohio (AP) — A young Ohio woman found shot dead in her car was 5 months pregnant, and her 14-month-old daughter is in critical condition with a gunshot wound to the head, authorities and family members said Friday.

In a short news release about the Wednesday night death of Brittany Stykes, 22, the Brown County Sheriff's Office did not include a potential motive, and sheriff's officials did not return repeated calls for comment Thursday and Friday.

Authorities responded to a call Wednesday night about a single-vehicle crash on State Route 68 north of Ripley, about 45 miles southeast of Cincinnati.

When they arrived, they found Stykes dead from gunshot wounds. Her baby daughter, Aubree, was still strapped in her car seat, bleeding from a gunshot wound to the head.

Stykes' aunt, Brenda Pack, cried as she told The Associated Press on Friday that her niece was 5 months pregnant.

"She was a good girl and she was a great mother," Pack said. "There's going to be a hole in this family."

She said Stykes' 14-month-old daughter, Aubree, was in critical condition but "holding her own" and "making little improvements" at Cincinnati Children's Hospital.

Stykes' mother, Mary Dodson, told WKRC-TV that the family has no idea why someone would have shot her.

"She was on her way home and somebody shot them while they were driving. That's all we know," she said.


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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