Slain Rhode Island woman cared for children at local YMCA

January 3, 2020 GMT

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (AP) — The 54-year-old Rhode Island woman shot and killed on New Year’s Day was a trusted member of the child care team at a local YMCA, officials said.

Cheryl Smith was killed in her Pawtucket home on Wednesday.

Smith was “a beloved member of the community and our child care team and reached hundreds of children during her tenure with us,” chief executive officer of the YMCA of Pawtucket, Charles Clifford, wrote in a letter to parents.

“We understand this news may be very distressing to you and your children,” he wrote according to The Providence Journal. “The Pawtucket Y is partnering with grief counselors for anyone who may need emotional support.”

An Albany, New York man and an 18-year-old Pawtucket woman are being held without bail on first-degree murder charges in Smith’s death.

The woman used to date Smith’s son, who was present at the time of the shooting, Pawtucket police said, but they did not disclose a motive.