What to Know
- A 40-year-old woman was charged in the 1992 fatal shooting of a 12-year-old New Jersey girl, prosecutors announced Thursday
- Quiana Dees was discovered unconscious with a gunshot wound to the head in Neptune Township May 2, 1992; She died the following day
- Because the woman was 13 years old at time of the Dees killing, the charge has been sent to Monmouth County Family Court, Juvenile Division
A 40-year-old woman was charged in the 1992 fatal shooting of a 12-year-old New Jersey girl, prosecutors announced Thursday.
The woman, who at one point lived in Asbury Park, but now resides in Henderson, North Carolina, is facing charges of aggravated manslaughter in connection with the killing of Quiana Dees, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher K. Gramiccioni said.
Because the woman was 13 years old at the time of the Dees killing, the charge has been issued as a juvenile delinquency complaint and she faces a maximum prison term of four years. Because of confidentiality in juvenile cases, the woman’s name has not been made public and the case will be heard in Monmouth County Family Court, Juvenile Division.
Additionally, the juvenile statues in effect at the time of the crime also preclude the possibility of the case being sent to adult criminal court, Gramiccioni said.
Dees' mother Penny Dees and the community have marched for 26 years in Neptune, hoping and praying for justice for Quiana. Now the marching can come to an end, with a mother's quest for justice over.
"If she don't get any time, I'm satisfied because I have closure," said Penny Dees, adding she was grateful to the prosecutor's office for everything they'd done.
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Dees was discovered unconscious with a gunshot wound to the head and clinging to live in a vacant wooded lot on Washington Avenue in Neptune Township on the morning of May 2, 1992. Dees, who was in the seventh grade at the time of her death, left her Asbury Park apartment the previous evening, prosecutors said. She was pronounced dead on May 3, 1992.
"She didn't do parties," Penny Dees told News 4 New York on Thursday. "I didn't allow that, so she did go to the party by sneaking out of the house. I knew somebody had to persuade her, because it's not something she would have done on her own."
The suspect remains detained in North Carolina, pending her extradition back to New Jersey to face this charge, prosecutors say.
Penny Dees says she has one more march ahead, this time a victory march next May.
"That's my celebration in March for getting justice for my daughter," she said.