ST. LOUIS – A year-long investigation into a fatal carjacking ended Friday as a man was indicted for the death of a Pine Lawn woman who touched many people’s lives. The defendant was already in police custody, having been charged with killing someone else just days later.
According to court documents, federal prosecutors allege 18-year-old Lashawn Clayburn carjacked and killed 61-year-old Naomi Miller in Pine Lawn and, less than two weeks later, killed another man in north St. Louis City.
Officers with the North County Police Cooperative responded to a 911 call around 7:50 p.m. on January 5, 2019 for a person found shot in their driveway. When officers arrived at the home in the 2500 block of Arden, they found a woman who had died of a gunshot wound. The victim was later identified as Miller.
Miller’s niece, Shanna Wakefield, said her aunt was a wonderful person.
“She loved everybody. Her service to her church was amazing,” Wakefield said.
“She loved her church family and she loved her family and her friends as well. She was just an amazing person. She would help anybody.”
The suspected shooter, Clayburn, was eventually arrested on March 2, 2019 – but for a different crime. He was charged in St. Louis City Circuit Court in connection with the January 17 killing of Chrishaun Hilliard.
“I think that she would be praying for him,” Wakefield said. “That he do have a heart of repentance and I do believe—because who she was—I believe she would have forgiven him.”
North County Police Cooperative Major Ron Martin said in a statement: “While the actions of all personnel involved in the investigation will not bring Naomi Miller back to her loved ones and friends, we can only hope it brings them solace and closure.”
Miller’s niece was thankful to the police.
“I am so grateful to all those individuals,” Wakefield said. “I can’t name all the names but they know who they are and I am so very grateful.”
If convicted, Clayburn could spend the rest of his life behind bars.