CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — 30-year-old Tiquan Smith was an Air Force veteran, father of two daughters, and a business owner. Loved ones say all who knew him, loved him.
“He didn’t have any problems with anybody out here on these streets. There was nothing but love out here, so whoever did this to him didn’t know him; they did not know him,” said his mother, Sharon Barnes.
His girlfriend Dianna Sykes was on the phone with him on Sunday, November 20, just before 9 p.m., when he reportedly said a truck was following too closely on I-64 East. Sykes says he then exited to South Military Highway.
“He then said I’m getting off, I’m getting off. Then he said they are going straight and then as soon as he said they are going straight, he said ‘oh [expletive] babe they are turning, they are turning.’ I said they’re following you. That’s when I heard crackle, crackle, crackle, and nothing else,” said a tearful Sykes. She says Smith did not offer a description of the driver or the truck.
The victim’s grandmother, mother, and 9-year-old daughter rushed to the crime scene.
“And we saw the car. As soon as we saw the car we stopped and we dropped out the car and granddaughter was screaming and hollering and the police said you can’t go over there,” said grandmother Sandra Wilson, who shared a home with Smith and his children.
Smith’s mother was also on the scene, where she learned from a police officer that her son was dead.
“He said, ‘ma’am you got to get out of the street; we are investigating a homicide,'” Barnes said.
Regina Mobley: Was there any indication that he was involved in a dispute on the highway, a road rage type dispute?
Dianne Sykes: He was not arguing with anybody, he just said these bright lights were in his face.
The family hopes someone has surveillance video of Smith’s car, a green Volkswagen Passat, as it was followed by a truck driver with a gun on I-64 East at South Military Highway near George Washington Highway.
The victim’s father, Kenneth Barnes, offered an appeal to the public.
“If you saw anything, if you know anything, if you heard anything, please contact the Chesapeake police or WAVY-TV 10 and please provide the information so we can catch the murderer of our son,” Barnes said.
Tiquan’s family members have set up a memorial fund in his honor. To donate, click here.