Medical Examiner: 2 stabbed, 2 killed by fire in Petersburg - - The News for South Mississippi


Medical Examiner: 2 stabbed, 2 killed by fire in Petersburg

Alexander Hill, Jr. (Source: Alexander Hill, Jr. (Source:

The Medical Examiner has released the cause of death of four people killed, including a 2-year-old, in Petersburg.

Pauline Wilkins and Vicki Ansar were stabbed multiple times in the torso. Tanique Chavis and 2-year-old Delvari Chavis died from the fire and smoke inhalation.

Police are still searching for Alexander Hill, Jr., who they say is a person of interest.

Meanwhile, the funeral will be held on Saturday; and because the family expects a large turnout, the venue was changed to an even bigger church.

People continue to leave mementos at the site of the tragedy that's rocked this Petersburg community.

Councilman W. Howard Myers has fond memories of Wilkins, she was one of his supporters.

"I met her in my first run for council," he said.

They bonded over a desire to clean up Harding Street.  "She wanted to see it paved she wanted to see the restructure, revitalization," he said.

While in life Wilkins looked for signs of change, there are these signs now that this neighborhood is stepping in to help during this tragic time.  Spontaneous car washes, cookouts and fundraisers have been organized with the donations going towards helping the victims' surviving relatives.

"It says a lot about Petersburg, it says how wonderful and loving this community is to one another," says Councilman Myers.

Originally Wilkins,  Ansar, Chavis and two year old Delvari were to be remembered at their family church, Metropolitan Baptist.  But based on the turnout from Thursday night's vigil, the family decided the service needed a bigger building.    With hundreds of people expected to attend, they say this Celebration of Life will now take place at Mount Olivet Baptist Church in Petersburg at 1 p.m.

They family says an official fundraiser has not yet been organized.

The US Marshals Service is now offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case.

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