Before She Was Killed, 7-Months Pregnant Okla. Woman Texted for Help: 'They Gonna Kill Me Mom'
On May 2, Shaliyah Toombs' body was found inside a pickup truck parked along the shoulder of Interstate 35 near Goldsby
Police in Oklahoma reportedly say the morning she was killed, a 23-year-old mother who was about seven months pregnant with her third child texted her mom in a last-ditch effort to save her own life.
“They gonna kill me mom help me,” read the message Shaliyah Toombs sent in the early hours of April 29 to her mother, Twyla Taylor, according to The Oklahoman and local TV station KFOR, citing court records.
Toombs, who lived in Oklahoma City with her two daughters, was reported missing hours later by Taylor, KFOR reports.
On May 2, Toombs’ body was found inside a pickup truck parked along the shoulder of Interstate 35 near Goldsby, according to a statement from the state’s Bureau of Investigation.
Court records obtained by PEOPLE confirm the arrests of three people in connection with Toombs’ slaying.
The Oklahoman reports that police were led to her remains by one of those three suspects: Daniel Vasquez allegedly told a police officer at a convenience store that his truck had run out of gas a few miles away and there was a dead body inside the vehicle.
PEOPLE confirms that Vasquez, 33, was detained on a complaint of accessory to a homicide, to which he has not yet entered a plea. He remains in custody. It is unclear if he has retained an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
Taylor said Toombs was pregnant with a son, to be named Haydenn, KFOR reports.
“We are a family of girls. My mom had two girls. I have Shaliyah. My sister has a daughter. Shaliyah had two girls and we were finally getting a boy,” Taylor told the station. “I was like, ‘I am finally going to get a grandson,’ but they took that away from me.”
The Day of the Killing
Court records obtained by the Oklahoman allege that Vasquez arrived at Toombs’ residence around 1 a.m. on the day she vanished. Not long later, Joshua Finkbeiner, 30, and 42-year-old Staci Harjo, also allegedly showed up, accusing Toombs of theft.
A court affidavit obtained by the newspaper alleges that a backpack holding a hard drive vanished from Harjo’s truck after Toombs borrowed the vehicle. The hard drive was the property of Finkbeiner’s employer and reportedly contained documents connected to oilfield work.
Vasquez allegedly told police that on April 29, he and Toombs were ordered into a truck at gunpoint and that all four drove around for hours until arriving at an area of farmland, according to the Oklahoman.
About 4:50 in the morning, Toombs texted her mother for help.
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After leaving the farm, Finkbeiner choked Toombs for “about 20 minutes” and then Harjo instructed Vasquez to “finish her off,” authorities allege, according to the court records in the case.
Vasquez allegedly told investigators he felt no pulse when he clenched his hands around her throat.
Finkbeiner and Harjo allegedly then left the truck with Vasquez, gave him some money and told him to drive away, the Oklahoman reports.
Both were arrested in Arkansas on Saturday — days after Vasquez reported Toombs’ death — and are held on suspicion of first-degree murder. They are awaiting extradition to Oklahoma. It is unclear if they have retained attorneys.