Detroit woman murdered days before scheduled court appearance

Detroit woman murdered days before scheduled appearance to testify in court

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An undated photo of Tannisha Blow An undated photo of Tannisha Blow
(WJBK) -

Tannisha Blow was set to testify in a court case, but her family is convinced she was murdered days before to keep her from testifying. Her family gathered in her honor Wednesday, the day she would have celebrated her 38th birthday.

Tannisha was last seen alive on November 16. She headed home around 3 a.m. Police sources say she was just steps away from her front door when she was killed.

"Someone apparently was waiting for her and they killed my sister." The family members of the victim did not want to be identified.

A witness says he was awakened when it happened. "He said he heard a whistle and then he heard two shots," a family member tells Fox 2's Andrea Isom. Tannisha was shot in the back of the head.

The family believes it was a set up.

Tannisha's family tells us she was raped and beaten in 2011. Court documents accuse Samuel Smalley of the crimes. The family says he was let out of jail on a tether, a decision they were "let down" by.

"People have been approaching her, trying to pay her to get her to drop the case and just to walk away and not press charges. But my sister did not want to take the money because she wanted his prosecuted him for what he did to her."

VIDEO: Click on the video player above to hear more from Tannisha's family in a report from Fox 2's Andrea Isom

Detroit police are investigating the homicide. The Wayne County Prosecutor's say it is still able to proceed with Smalley's trial and a jury trial is set for March 2014.

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