Father offers $25K reward years after pregnant daughter killed

Sarah Rahal
The Detroit News
Father, Major Rush stands with Dindi Maloney from Crime Stoppers during a press conference Tuesday.

Southfield — Eight years after his daughter was murdered while driving on Detroit’s west side, Major Rush said he can’t give up hope that one day her killer will be brought to justice. 

LaTasha Cheatum, 18, was shot in the head at 2 p.m. on June 4, 2010, as she was exiting the Interstate 96 expressway at Wyoming. Cheatum was driving a white 1995 Pontiac Grand Prix and crashed into the side of a home on Griggs Street after she was shot. 

Cheatum was nearly four months pregnant at the time of the incident and languished for two days in the hospital before succumbing to her injuries. 

“This was not random,” said Rush, 56. “My daughter was a very sweet, lovely young lady. She wasn’t a danger to society and her life was taken and I’m asking someone to please speak up.”

Rush sold his home in Florida, where he lived for the last five years, to increase the reward for a larger incentive and continues to seek answers with the help of Crime Stoppers of Michigan. 

Crime Stoppers is offering a $25,000 cash reward for tips that lead to an arrest.

Rush said his only child was driving with her boyfriend at the time of the incident when she exited the ramp at 35 mph and two unidentified men pulled up beside her, reached out the window and shot her while she was in the driver's seat. Her boyfriend was not injured. 

“She was not driving when she left my house and I called her only 45 minutes before she was killed and she didn’t tell me what was going on but just that she was driving and couldn’t talk,” said Rush. “I didn’t know she was pregnant until we were at the hospital.”

Cheatum was about to begin her semester at Ross Medical School in Flint, aspiring to become a nurse. 

“This has bothered me for eight years and I just can’t give up. I miss her smile, she had my smile and I used to call her all the time,” said Rush. “In my heart, I just need to know what’s the motive? Why? Who would want to kill her.” 

Anonymous tips can be submitted to Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-SPEAK-UP or online at www.1800speakup.org.