All three children inside a Kenner apartment at the time of a double homicide Monday that left their mother dead have been released to the custody of their grandmother.
Ellen Scott, 51, said that after a lengthy hearing Thursday morning in Jefferson Parish Juvenile Court, the three children — a 10-year-old boy named Damein, a 2-year-old boy named Zay and a girl named Rayne, born March 17 — were released into her custody.
The Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services confirmed that news.
“They are so glad to be home. They are happy, playing around, jumping around,” Scott said. “We’re a close-knitted family.”
The children’s mother, Dawn Scott, 28, was killed Monday along with her boyfriend Raynell Kimbrough, 31, Rayne’s father, inside the apartment on Idaho Avenue. Dawn Scott’s body was found next to Rayne, who was unharmed, in an upstairs bedroom. The killings remain unsolved.
Hours after the killings, a DCFS worker took the children into state custody. Some relatives reacted in anger, but Ellen Scott urged patience at the crime scene.
Three days later, she and a large group of anxious relatives gathered outside the courtroom of Juvenile Court Judge Ann Murry Keller. Several family members said they had no indication how the judge would rule.
Ellen Scott said before the hearing that she was still in the process of taking care of basic duties, like recovering her daughter’s body from the coroner and planning her funeral.
“But right now my priority is getting my babies,” Scott said.
Later in the day, Scott announced that she had succeeded. She asked anyone interested in helping her care for the children to make a donation in the name of her daughter, Dawn Ellen Scott, at any area Capital One bank.
Scott said she intends to use the money to help with necessities for all three children, including counseling for Damein, who discovered his mother’s body after hearing gunshots.
“It’s just me, and I’m going to do my best,” Scott said. “I thank God I got full custody of my babies.”
The Kenner Police Department, meanwhile, has not released any new updates on the investigation since Tuesday. Police Chief Michael Glaser said then that detectives had interviewed a “person of interest” whose car was seen leaving the area after the shooting, but that person has not been identified or named as a suspect.
Crimestoppers is offering a $5,000 reward for information about the shooting. Kenner police asked anyone with tips to call Detective Harold Pendergast at (504) 712-2226 or Crimestoppers at (504) 822-1111.