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  • Writer's pictureCaleb Kaltenbach

3 Murdered Girls Need Your Help

Updated: Jul 28, 2023


On the evening of July 29, 2022, Shommaonique Oliver-Wickerson, a 28YO single mother of 6 children, was working in Atlanta, TX, while her 31YO male cousin, Paris Propps, babysat her young children. He had been living with Shommaonique’s family for about 2 years.[1] Around 9:00 PM, Propps called Shommaonique while she was at work and told her, “Your kids are missing.”[2]


That’s pretty much all he told her.


Oddly enough, he used a neighbor’s phone to make the call. Supposedly, Propps never called 911 to report the missing children, nor did he tell Shommaonique how many of her 6 children were missing. More on him later…


As any caring parent would do, Shommaonique called 911 as she rushed home, where she discovered 3 of her children to be safe and sound.[3] Sadly, her daughters Zi’Ariel Robinson Oliver (9YO), A’Miyah Hughes (8YO), and Te’Mari Robinson Oliver (5YO) were nowhere to be found.

Shommaonique immediately began searching for her children. Law enforcement, rescue crews, and others soon joined the search. A few hours later, little shoes, scattered children’s clothing, and a child’s bicycle were found in a field near a pond that’s about 200 yards away from Shommaonique’s house (owned by another one of her relatives).[4] Footprints were also found in the mud at the edge of the pond.[5]


Early the next morning, the Bowie County dive team recovered the bodies of the 3 girls from the same pond.[6]


While saying they hadn’t arrived at any conclusions, authorities quickly seemed to insinuate the children probably drowned.[7] However, Shommaonique retorted that her kids wouldn’t venture into the pond and “would never go into a field barefooted.”[8]

According to Texas Cass County DA Courtney Shelton, autopsies were done on the day the girls’ bodies were discovered. About 6 days later, a Texas Ranger met with Shommaonique and her father to give them limited information from the preliminary autopsy reports—the cause of death was homicide.[9]


Nonetheless, it took the authorities 8 months to inform the public the case was a homicide. You read that correctly—8 months! And yes, that means the public was unaware that a child killer had been on the loose for 8 months. When DA Shelton made a public announcement, the dark truths behind the girls’ deaths were revealed: [10]

  • The girls didn’t drown—they were strangled.

  • They also had lacerations on their faces (more brutal than cuts).

  • They were thrown into the pond after being murdered.

Also, Shommaonique shared that her girls were sexually assaulted.[11]


The DA also reported that numerous witness statements had been recorded, and DNA had been collected.[12] However, no suspects or persons of interest have been publicly identified, so the DA is currently asking for the public’s help.

DA Courtney Shelton

When DA Shelton was asked why it took her office and other authorities 8 months to announce the case as a homicide, she stated, “I have provided all [the] information that I will be providing at this time.”[13]


Yup… that was pretty much all of the information that has been released since July 29, 2022.


Despite being promised the Texas Rangers would stay in contact and return calls, Shommaonique says it took the Rangers months to return any of her calls, and they didn’t seem interested in her theory of what happened.


What About the Babysitter?

And what about Paris Propps—the cousin who babysat the 6 children on the night of the disappearance?


Apparently, he isn’t speaking to Shommaonique or cooperating with law enforcement.[14]


Why?


I kid you not—he claims that his mom won’t let him.


Propps—a 31YO man—isn’t cooperating with authorities because of his mommy. The man has lived on this planet for 31+ years and should be able to make his own decisions.


“Why won’t [she] let him talk to the police or take him down to the police?” Shommaonique asked during one interview. [15]


While Shommaonique says she’s never had an issue with Propps before, according to one of the surviving children, Propps allegedly went into the woods with the 3 girls before they disappeared.[16]


Just to be clear—I’m not accusing Propps of murder. Given both his strange behavior and his refusal to cooperate with law enforcement, I'm point out that he appears to be one of the major keys to this mystery. Yet, according to all accounts, the authorities haven’t even officially brought Propps in for questioning.[17]


Imagine babysitting your little cousins when some of them suddenly disappeared… wouldn’t you do everything you could to find them?


What are the Authorities Doing?

I pray authorities will receive help. And I hope some questions like the following are answered:

  • Why were authorities so quick to use words like “drowning” before information from the autopsies was made public?

  • Did “drowning” insinuations at the beginning of the investigation cause the public to assume this was an “open and shut” case?

  • Why did it take 8 months for the case to be announced as a homicide?

  • Why are the authorities not communicating better about the status of the case?

  • Why has Propps never officially been called in for questioning?

Now, it very well could be that authorities already know who is responsible for this crime. It could be that more evidence is needed before arrests are made or certain information becomes public. It could be they don’t want to compromise the integrity of the case by sharing “guilty knowledge” (information that only the police and murderer would know). It could be that investigating authorities are overworked and under-resourced. Any logical person can accept these reasons.


It's difficult to accept the authorities' poor communication in this case and about this case. Poor communication from these particular authorities has only fostered assumptions. At the very worst, their lack of communication and apparent lack of action communicates indifference. If that is true, why the indifference? One can only speculate, so I choose not to do so now.


All this to say, it would make a difference if authorities gave simple updates like: "We are still pursuing leads and gathering more evidence. We hope to have something more concrete to share soon."

It goes without saying that such a horrible loss has taken a substantial toll on Shommaonique (who even suffered a heart attack due to the stress). She is mourning her 3 children and waiting for answers, and she remains a hard-working single mother. Amazingly, she has reported harassment from total strangers who, for whatever reason, blame her for the girls’ deaths.[18] However, like any mother, Shommaonique wants justice for her 3 babies:


“My heart it hurt so bad because my babies are gone to be with the Lord

& I know everyone have a role on earth but their roles was too short. They

had a long life ahead of them, and now they will never get to grow up

into the young ladies I know they was going to be.”[19]


What Can You Do?

  • Pray.

  • Contact the Cass County DA’s office in Texas and ask why more headway on the case isn’t being made or updates being provided to the public so it’s evident that headway is being made in the investigation.

  • Contact the Texas Rangers if you have any information regarding this case.

  • Post about this case on social media.

  • Get others to post and write about this case, including people with influence, those in the news media, etc.

Hug your loved ones a little tighter today, and pray for the Lord to return quickly.


_____________________________________________


Sources

[1] Aqua Boogie, “Mother of Three Sisters Found Dead in Texas Pond Insists, ‘Cass County Don't Care About Black People,’” Black Revolt News (June 5, 2023). [2] Justin Rohrlich, “Mom Speaks Out After 3 Daughters Are Strangled, Dumped in Pond,” The Daily Beast (March 27, 2023). [3] Justin Rohrlich, “Mom Speaks Out After 3 Daughters Are Strangled, Dumped in Pond,” The Daily Beast (March 27, 2023); and “Civil Rights Group Demands Answers in Murder of Three East Texas Girls,” KTBS 3 (April 6, 2023). [4] Andrea Marks, “3 Girls Were Strangled to Death. Why Did It Take 8 Months for the DA to Tell the Public?” Rolling Stone (May 20, 2023); and Natasha Anderson & Stephen M. Lepore, “REVEALED: Three Texas Sisters Aged 5, 8 and 9, Thought to Have Drowned in Neighbor's Pond Were STRANGLED First, Cops Reveal - But Say They Don't Have a Suspect After Eight Months,” Daily Mail (March 25, 2023). [5] Marlo Lacen, “Bodies of 3 Girls Recovered from Cass County Pond,” KTAL News (July 30, 2022). [6] "Siblings’ Bodies Recovered from Cass County Pond,” Texarkana Gazette (July 30, 2022). [7] See Marlo Lacen, “Bodies of 3 Girls Recovered from Cass County Pond,” KTAL News (July 30, 2022); and ”Siblings’ Bodies Recovered from Cass County Pond,” Texarkana Gazette (July 30, 2022). [8] Justin Rohrlich, “Mom Speaks Out After 3 Daughters Are Strangled, Dumped in Pond,” The Daily Beast (March 27, 2023). [9] Andrea Marks, “3 Girls Were Strangled to Death. Why Did It Take 8 Months for the DA to Tell the Public?” Rolling Stone (May 20, 2023). [10] Ibid. [11] Aqua Boogie, “Mother of Three Sisters Found Dead in Texas Pond Insists, ‘Cass County Don't Care About Black People,’” Black Revolt News (June 5, 2023). [12] “Civil Rights Group Demands Answers in Murder of Three East Texas Girls,” KTBS 3 (April 6, 2023). [13] Andrea Marks, “3 Girls Were Strangled to Death. Why Did It Take 8 Months for the DA to Tell the Public?” Rolling Stone (May 20, 2023). [14] Emily Bain-Sanders & Shawn Larson, “Mother of Three Girls in Homicide Case Talks,” Cass County Citizens Journal-Sun (April 5, 2023). [15] Justin Rohrlich, “Mom Speaks Out After 3 Daughters Are Strangled, Dumped in Pond,” The Daily Beast (March 27, 2023). [16] Aqua Boogie, “Mother of Three Sisters Found Dead in Texas Pond Insists, ‘Cass County Don't Care About Black People,’” Black Revolt News (June 5, 2023). [17] Ibid.

[18] Justin Rohrlich, “Mom Speaks Out After 3 Daughters Are Strangled, Dumped in Pond,” The Daily Beast (March 27, 2023). [19] “Bodies of Three Young Texas Sisters Found in Private Pond,” The New York Beacon (August 3, 2022).

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