Two high-profile Nashville murder cases moved forward Wednesday after brief hearings at nearly the same time.
Travis Reinking, 30, faces 17 charges in the April 2018 mass shooting at an Antioch Waffle House. And Metro Police Officer Andrew Delke is charged with first-degree murder in the fatal on-duty shooting of Daniel Hambrick in July 2018.
Attorneys for each entered pleas of not guilty. Neither defendant came to court, as expected for the procedural arraignments.
But several family members of the victims were in attendance, and vowed to never miss hearings.
Shirl Baker, whose 21-year-old daughter DeEbony Groves was gunned down at the Waffle House, said she still feels a heavy weight.
“We’re enduring,” she said. “I lost a chance to see her graduate. I lost a chance to help her plan a wedding. I lost a chance for grandchildren. And so I feel like it’s my right to be here to know what’s going on.”
“It’s a healing process for me,” said Shaundelle Brooks, mother of 23-year-old victim Akila Dasilva.
Both mothers wore buttons with images of the ones they lost — and of the other’s child as well.
“Were going to encourage and represent each other’s family,” Baker said. “Strength is important.”
In a courtroom down the hall, family members of Daniel Hambrick wore matching T-shirts with his photo.
“They will be here to see this out, regardless of how ... ‘insignificant’ the court date is,” said family attorney Joy Kimbrough.
The officer is expected in court Feb. 19 for a hearing, although a trial is still months away.