Sixth victim in Maryvale serial shootings dies, community on edge

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The third victim in a shooting outside a west Phoenix home has died. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) The third victim in a shooting outside a west Phoenix home has died. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
Stefanie Ellis, 33, was critically wounded and eventually died. Her 12-year-old daughter, Maleah, was killed, as was Stefanie's partner, Angela Linner, 31. Stefanie Ellis, 33, was critically wounded and eventually died. Her 12-year-old daughter, Maleah, was killed, as was Stefanie's partner, Angela Linner, 31.
Dozens came out for a community to discuss the series shootings in the Maryvale neighborhood. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) Dozens came out for a community to discuss the series shootings in the Maryvale neighborhood. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
These are five of the six victims in the string of four shootings in Maryvale. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) These are five of the six victims in the string of four shootings in Maryvale. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

The mother of the 12-year-old who was killed in a triple shooting last month has died of her injuries.

Stefanie Ellis, 33, was sitting a car parked outside her home with her daughter and partner when somebody shot all three of them in the early morning hours of Sunday, June 12.

Maleah Ellis and Angela Linner, 31, both died that day. Ellis was critically wounded. Sgt. Jonathan Howard said Thursday afternoon that she "succumbed to her injuries and died."

Betty Moore, Ellis' aunt, said the family is heartbroken, adding that her death comes a week to the day after they buried her daughter.

"There's a lot of hurt right now and not understanding how God allowed this to happen," Moore said.

The news of her death caught many in her family off guard as Moore says they believed she was making some progress. 

"She would squeeze your hands when you go see her, you call her name she would look up and see you so she was there for a while," said Moore.

READ: 'You got to be evil to do this,' relative of murdered girl says

The shooting outside the Ellis home is one of a series of four deadly shootings that investigators believe to be connected. Ellis, who had been the only survivor of the crime spree, is the sixth fatality.

Now, her family hoping the killer is found not only to bring justice but so that no one else gets hurt.

"They're still out ya know, and until they're found who is safe?" she said.

The Phoenix Police Department hosted a community meeting in Maryvale Wednesday night to answer residents' questions about the cases.

Detectives reiterated that they believe the same person is responsible for all the killings. However, they do not have much in the way of a suspect description or even a vehicle description.

The Phoenix Police Department has a task force dedicated to this case; Lt. Ed DeCastro said they meet seven days a week and track down every tip. 

RELATED: Police need public's help solving several W. Phx homicides, warn of more violent crime

All four shootings happened within a relatively small area of Maryvale -- between 55th and 67th avenues on the east and west and between Campbell Avenue and McDowell Road on the north and south.

The victims range in age between 12 and 33 years old. 

The six victims in the four unsolved shootings are:

As is common in so many criminal acts, input from our community is vital to our success.

The oldest case goes back to the night of Friday, April 1 but the rest took place in June. The last shooting took place on June 12, 2016, but officers say it's important neighbors stay vigilant and report anything out of the ordinary.

Officers have canvassed the area, handing out fliers and talking to residents. The Phoenix Police Department has even reassigned officers to investigate the crimes, but investigators still haven't cracked the case.

Ellis' death comes less than 24 hours after the reward for information leading to an arrest or indictment in the cases was increased to $16,000.

If you have any information about any one of these cases, please call Silent Witness at either 480-WITNESS (948-6377) or 1-800-343-TIPS (8477). Spanish speakers may call 480-TESTIGO (837-8446). (Click or tap phone number to call from this story on your mobile device.) You can remain anonymous.

PDF: All four Silent Witness fliers (oldest case to most recent)

Copyright 2016 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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