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Woman killed, man wounded in Beltzhoover shooting

| Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013, 8:06 a.m.
Snow falls on a curbside memorial honoring the memory of Tiona Jackson, 28, of Allentown outside Warrington Field along Warrington Avenue in Beltzoover near the spot where Jackson was fatally shot early on Thursday. Jackson died of multiple gunshot wounds. Photo taken February 28, 2013. Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review

Neighbors of a woman fatally shot early Wednesday morning in Beltzhoover described the mother of six children as quiet and hard-working.

Tiona Jackson, 28, of Lillian Street in the next-door neighborhood of Allentown died when gunfire erupted shortly after 1:30 a.m. near the intersection of Vincent Street and East Warrington Avenue near Warrington Field, police said.

An impromptu memorial with devotional candles, flowers and notes of condolence appeared along the fence surrounding the field.

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner's office said Jackson suffered gunshot wounds to her head, trunk and extremities. Her death was ruled a homicide.

A 32-year-old Penn Hills man, whose name was not released, was found unresponsive on the ground near Jackson. He was taken to UPMC Mercy in critical condition with gunshot wounds, police said. His condition since has been upgraded to stable.

Jackson's neighbors said her children — two boys and four girls — range in age from 13 to 1.

Pittsburgh police said the children are being cared for by a family member. Investigators have not yet identified a motive for the shooting or any suspects. One neighbor said she saw Jackson leaving for work early most mornings wearing medical “scrubs” and accompanied by her children.

A witness told police that a tan or gold mid-sized sedan — possibly a Pontiac Grand Prix — fled the scene following the shooting.

Stephanie Blakmore, 23, of Carrick, who moved from Lillian Street about three years ago but regularly goes back to take her brother to visit their grandmother, said she is saddened by Jackson's death.

“It's really a shame that somebody could take a mother away from her kids the way they did,” said Blakmore, whose 14-year-old brother, Jimmy, often played with Jackson's older children while visiting.

“I didn't know her (Jackson) well, but I knew she always worked hard, was very quiet and just had a normal family. Something like this should not have happened,” Blakmore said.

Anyone with information is asked to call the homicide squad at 412-323-7161.

Tony LaRussa is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7987 or tlarussa@tribweb.com.

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