Memphis Dad Shoots 8-Year-Old Daughter Dead, Claims He Mistook Her Silhouette ‘For A Burglar’

A Memphis father allegedly checking his house for an intruder fatally shot his eight-year-old daughter in the chest when he saw her silhouette in a closet and mistook her for a burglar, he told police.

William Oliver, 31, who lives on Timothy Drive in Memphis’s Whitehaven neighborhood, claimed he was using a gun to check his home after the child’s mother said she heard a noise around 2am on August 27, according to an affidavit obtained by the Daily Mail.

Oliver slid back a bedroom closet door and opened fire when he saw a silhouette moving inside. He said that he didn’t realize until moments later that he just shot his daughter, A’layla Bassett.

The victim was rushed to Methodist South Hospital with a bullet in her chest, but died shortly after arriving, according to the Memphis Police Department.

The affidavit adds that Bassett’s mother, Ciera Martin, drove her to the hospital while Oliver followed in a separate car with their four other children, who were also in the home at the time of the shooting. It does not clarify what Oliver’s relationship is to Martin.

Cops apparently did not believe Oliver’s story and the dad was charged with reckless homicide.

The Memphis Police Department tweeted on August 27, ‘At 2.27am, officers responded to a female juvenile shooting victim at Methodist South. The victim did not survive her injuries. Prelim info indicated that she was shot in a home in the 1300 block of Timothy. One male has been detained. The investigation is ongoing.’

A follow up tweet later that day read, ‘William Oliver, 31, was charged with Reckless Homicide in this case.’

Memphis police said the shooting is still under investigation.


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