"The fact that it happened before Christmas will always be a conversation of 'when we lost daddy,'" the girl's mom said.
Trigger Warning: This article mentions gun violence which some readers may find distressing.
Joshua Mitchell, 37, was gunned down in his driveway off Warrenton Drive in Douglasville on December 17 after returning home from work. Authorities said they got many 911 calls reporting bullets being fired in the neighborhood but have yet to apprehend the perpetrator. Mitchell's wife, Nicoele Mitchell, says her husband was a Marine, an entrepreneur, and a "devoted father" to three daughters, Sa'Raya, 7, Sa'Maya, 10, and Jaida, 12.
His 7-year-old daughter, Sa'Raya, feels the most pain as his family searches for answers to his situation. According to 11 Alive, the 7-year-old penned a letter to Santa asking him to help her find her father, "She said, 'I'm good in school, I make good grades, can I please have my daddy back?'"
The loving wife described her husband as the most selfless person she knew. "He was the type of person that would give people an opportunity even off of the streets," Nicoele explained. The mother of three and stepmother of one said she'd spent the last week remembering her greatest memories of her husband, adding that he was pure goodness. One happy memory she cherishes is the final time she heard her husband say I love you. “I’m glad that that morning before he left off to work – we got to say those words to each other," she said. "So that will forever be in my brain – his kiss and I love you."
As Mitchell's bereaved family pleads for justice in the unresolved case, Nicoele laments the fact that it occurred during the holidays. "The fact that it happened before Christmas will always be a conversation of 'when we lost daddy,'" Nicoele told the outlet.
According to a Paulding Sheriff's Department statement, police rushed to Mitchell's residence around 9:40 p.m. on December 17 after getting multiple 911 calls regarding the sound of gunfire. Officers discovered Mitchell dead in the driveway. He'd been shot multiple times. Deputies from the Paulding County Sheriff's Office and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation are still looking for the individual responsible for the 37-year-old's killing. In a statement, the office wrote, "Mitchell’s body was taken to the GBI Crime Lab where an autopsy will be performed later this week. Detectives and Agents are diligently working to try and determine what occurred during this incident, however, thus far there are no suspects and no motive has been determined."
They urged citizens to come forward with information. "Detectives and Agents would like to encourage anyone with information regarding this incident to please call the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Tip Line at (770) 443-3047 or send a message via the free Paulding Sheriff mobile app."
Cover Image Source: YouTube | 11Alive