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Man charged with killing pregnant woman told police he 'snapped'

4900 block of Bellefontaine Avenue homicide
Posted at 5:49 PM, Dec 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-08 18:49:11-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A man accused of murder told police his struggles with his mental and emotional health, along with drug abuse, led him to "snap" and shoot a pregnant woman.

Emmett C. Williams, 33, of Kansas City, Missouri, is charged in Jackson County Court with second-degree murder and armed criminal action in the Dec. 6 shooting death of Shayla Curtis.

KCPD officers found Curtis dead in the living room of a house around 8 p.m. in the 4900 block of Bellefontaine Avenue, according to a court document.

A witness told police Williams came to the witness's house to hang out in his bedroom.

Curtis went downstairs to the living room, and Williams told his friend he was leaving, per a court document.

The man said he heard a gunshot, went downstairs and found Curtis dead.

The court document states Williams called KCPD early the next day and told them he shot someone earlier in the night, wanting to turn himself in.

Williams told police Curtis called him a profane, unflattering name, that had not bothered him before in their four years of knowing one another, according to court documents.

But recently, Williams says suffering the loss of several family members has led to trouble with his emotions.

He said his emotional and mental health issues along with abusing illegal drugs led him to snap.

Williams went downstairs, made a quick decision when he walked near Curtis, pulled his gun and shot her, according to the court document.

He then left the house, walked to a wooded area and fell down a ravine.

Williams told police he lost his gun, backpack and cell phone.

The court document notes an autopsy revealed Curtis was pregnant.

A specially trained dog found the gun and other items.

For jurisdictions that utilize the Greater Kansas City Crime Stoppers Tips Hotline, anonymous tips can be made by calling 816-474-TIPS (8477), submitting the tip online or through the free mobile app at P3Tips.com.

Annual homicide details and data for the Kansas City area are available through the KSHB 41 News Homicide Tracker, which was launched in 2015. Read the KSHB 41 News Mug Shot Policy.