KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — UPDATE (9/27/19): Robin Howington, 36, appeared in court Friday morning for an arraignment. She will return on Oct. 17 for a hearing when she has a lawyer.
UPDATE (9/18/19): The Knoxville Police Department has arrested the mother of a 5-year-old girl who was shot and killed on Balsam Drive on Saturday night.
Robin Howington, 36, was arrested Tuesday evening on two counts of tampering with evidence in the shooting, KPD said Wednesday. Records show she has since been released on bond.
According to Knox County court documents, Howington did not want to give officers her cell phone after her 5-year-old daughter Destiny Oliver was shot and killed.
While at UT Medical Center, she allegedly went into the bathroom before handing over her phone and put it into running water "in hopes of destroying" it.
She allegedly feared the phone would have evidence of drug sales on it, the court documents said.
Howington later allegedly admitted to putting the phone into water when she was at the police department.
She then told officers that she wiped and hid the 9 mm gun that was used in the shooting. She put the gun in the bushes, records state. She also said she had moved items in the home including a stool and purse to make the scene look normal.
Knoxville attorney T. Scott Jones said some of those actions will be harder to defend than others.
"If it's your home and a chair is knocked over you may just as a matter of course just reach over and pick that chair up, but you know when you have situations occur like destroying a cell phone or hiding a weapon or quote unquote wiping a weapon down you know those are actually conscious acts," said Jones.
The 5-year-old killed in the shooting will be laid to rest on Thursday, according to an obituary for her posted to DignityMemorial.com.
It said she attended Fountain City Elementary School and Crossroads Ministries.
Knox County Schools said there will be additional support for students and staff at the school this week.
Fountain City Elementary Principal Ina Langston issued the following statement Wednesday:
"Our hearts are broken over the tragic loss of one of our students. She will be greatly missed by her fellow students and teachers. Our heartfelt sympathies go out to the family and friends affected by this tragedy."
The family will receive friends on Thursday with the funeral service to follow.
UPDATE (9/16/19): Knoxville Police said Monday that investigators don't believe the shooting on Balsam Drive that left a 5-year-old girl dead was a random act of violence.
The department launched an immediate and thorough investigation into the circumstances and events and said while it couldn't comment on the progress of the investigation, authorities don't believe there is any potential risk to the safety of the community or its children.
"No further information can be provided at this time as a parallel Department of Children’s Services (DCS) investigation is also underway," KPD said in a release.
KPD said officers responded to the 500 block of Balsam Drive for reports of a shooting Saturday night. When they got there, investigators said they found one victim, and responders took them to UT Medical Center.
UPDATE (9/15/2019): A 5-year-old girl has died after a Saturday night shooting in Fountain City.
After being transported to University of Tennessee Medical Center, KPD said the victim of Saturday night’s residential shooting at the 500 block of Balsam Drive died after life-saving measures proved unsuccessful.
Police said this is now an active homicide investigation.
ORIGINAL STORY (9/14/19): One person was wounded in a shooting in Fountain City on Saturday night, according to the Knoxville Police Department.
KPD said officers responded to the 500 block of Balsam Drive for reports of a shooting. When they got there, they found one victim, and responders took them to UT Medical Center, KPD said.
KPD did not release any other details about the victim or a possible suspect.
The KPD violent crimes unit is investigating the shooting. We will update this story as we get more information.