Mother wonders if serial killer is on the loose in Whitehaven

Published: Feb. 24, 2015 at 9:16 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 24, 2015 at 10:23 PM CST
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Cekia Armstrong (Source: WMC Action News 5)
Cekia Armstrong (Source: WMC Action News 5)
Nina Cook (Source: WMC Action News 5)
Nina Cook (Source: WMC Action News 5)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Two women were murdered last summer, less than one mile from each other, and one victim's mother thinks the same killer may be responsible for both.

Cekia Armstrong and Nina Cook were brutally murdered in the same Whitehaven neighborhood in 2014. Nobody was arrested in either murder.

Armstrong's family says she and Cook ran in the same circles.

"It was the worst day of my life," an emotional Patricia Armstrong said. "I'm sorry."

Words don't come easy when you've had to bury your own child.

After seeing a WMC Action News 5 report on Nina Cook, Patricia came forward to tell her daughter's story.

"I wanted to find out if my daughter was possibly murdered by whomever killed this girl," she said.

Cekia's body was found in a drainage ditch in August. She was naked and stripped of her personal belongings. Her mother says she was also beaten so badly that part of her face was gone.

"I can't imagine somebody so sweet being brutally beaten and thrown away like trash," Patricia said.

Three months earlier, Nina Cook was found on a vacant church property, also naked and stripped of her personal belongings. The medical examiner has not released Cook's cause of death, but a Crime Stoppers report says she was "brutally murdered."

Cekia left behind six children. Her children and their grandmother are all going through counseling to cope with what happened.

"We all loved her so. I want the person found," said Patricia, who is asking anyone with any information about her daughter's murder to come forward.

Memphis Police Department has not officially linked the two cases. The department says it is still investigating.

Copyright 2015 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved.