Slain Toronto mother Andrea White a 'pillar of the community'
33-year-old woman died after shots fired from Land Rover on weekend, police say
A woman slain by shots fired at her Toronto home over the weekend was a "pillar of the community," whose death has shaken the people she left behind, her family said Monday.
Toronto police have identified 33-year-old Andrea White as the victim in a homicide that occurred on Forest Creek Pathway on Saturday night.
Police say that a white Land Rover drove past White's home just after 11 p.m. Saturday. The vehicle then made a U-turn, passing by the home again.
Police allege that shots were fired from the passenger side of the vehicle. White was struck while in her garage. She was brought into her home by family and friends and then collapsed. Police say she died soon after.
On Monday afternoon, the slain woman’s cousin, Tammy Wilkinson, read a statement on behalf of White’s family.
"Andrea was one of the strongest women we have ever had the honour of knowing and loving," the family said in the statement. "She was the type of mother and wife that other women strive to be."
White is survived by four children, ranging in age from six to 16, as well as her common-law husband, according to the statement. A trust fund is being set up for them.
The family thanked the public for their support and the police officers that have been involved in the investigation into White's death.
They are urging anyone with information to contact investigators at 416-808-4200, or to call Crime Stoppers at 416-222-8477.
The victim’s grandfather, Don White, spoke separately with reporters outside a Toronto courthouse on Monday.
"They are very, very sick. They won’t go back to their home, they don’t want to go anywhere [near] where their mother was killed," he said of Andrea White’s surviving children.
Her family said a vigil has been planned for Wednesday evening. Funeral arrangements are still being made.
Two men — 21-year-old Michael Davani and 23-year-old Alwayne Bigby, a former NCAA basketball player — have been charged with first-degree murder in White’s death.
Both men appeared in court on Monday.
With a report from the CBC's Ivy Cuervo