SJPD asks the community to speak up in shooting death of 2-year-old girl

If you have any information, police ask you send an anonymous tip to their P3Tips website on the department's page at

Posted: Aug 12, 2020 7:37 AM
Updated: Aug 12, 2020 10:21 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) People in Midtown and around the city are still grappling with Sunday's shooting death of two-year-old Raelynn Craig.

There is a growing memorial on 20th and Messanie for the toddler as the community mourns her life and demands justice.

St. Joseph Police continues to investigate her death, along with other recent shootings in the area they said are linked to Sunday's shooting. But as police continue to search for suspects, officers said they need community members to step up and speak out. 

“It’s imperative that we get the cooperation of the community in cases like this,” said Captain Jeff Wilson, St. Joseph Police Department. 

No arrests have been made in Sunday's shooting.

Captain Wilson said in drive by cases, officers heavily rely on witnesses and tips from the community. Police said the lack of cooperation and willingness to share details with officers are making finding the suspect(s) a difficult task. 

“There isn’t a magic wand we can wave in these types of investigations. They’re difficult to do. It isn’t like t.v. We can’t flip over some piece of evidence that tells us who the suspect is. It takes cooperation, it takes communication,” said Wilson. 

Midtown leaders said people in the area know what happened Sunday, but aren't saying anything. 

“They obviously know exactly who was all shot, they know the details of why it happened but they aren’t speaking. There is a fire and instead of putting one out, we’ve created several small fires,” said Terresa Parks, United We Stand. 

Parks said the community at large is remaining silent because they are afraid of the repercussion if they were to speak up. 

“I do know that the community a lot of times is scared to speak up based on retaliation, based on the fact that they don’t feel safe contacting anonymously,” said Parks. 

Mayor Bill McMurray and the St. Joseph Police said the P3Tips website is completely anonymous and can be a trusted method to submit information. 

“That was the whole point, that it would be anonymous so that people who feared retaliation wouldn’t have to be afraid of that,” said McMurray. 

McMurray said Commander Eric Protzman in Tuesday's special council meeting, announced information in the case of Sunday's drive-by shooting would be met with a monetary award. 

“There’s at least a $1,000 reward for information, so it can be given anonymously. Without the cooperation of the community, the police can’t build a case to present to the prosecutor to prosecute these people and absent that, these terrible things will keep going on,” said McMurray. 

St. Joseph has seen a spike in gun violence, a dangerous trend police believe is tied to the same group of people responsible for Raelynn's death. 

“So, if we’re able to get some cooperation and bring a couple of these cases then we’re going to have a major effect on that number because I feel like the majority of that is linked to the same group of people,” said Wilson. 

If you have any information, police ask you to send an anonymous tip to their P3Tips website on the department's page at 

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A cool forecast is in store for northwest Missouri and northeast Kansas this week. Fall-like weather will usher into the area Monday with highs mainly in the 60s and no hazardous weather expected through the week. The area could see its first frost Friday morning as the lows drop into the low-to-mid 30s.
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