'I raised her better than that' - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

'I raised her better than that'


Tyler Police say 27-year-old Vanessa Ashford robbed the Regions Bank on Southeast Loop 323 and confessed to the Telco Credit Union robbery from February.

While her ID says she is from Shreveport, her family says she lived in Palestine.

Ashford's family says they're heartbroken and in disbelief that the woman they love could have done something like this.

"Why did she do that? I don't know. She didn't need any money. [She] could have come to me. I would have given it to [her]," says Vanessa Ashford's mother Martha Ashford.

"I just want my daughter to know that I love her, I'm there for her, and I will stand by her until the end," she adds.

Martha says she still can't believe the woman in the Telco Plus Credit Union surveillance video could be her daughter. She says just seeing the video hurts and leaves her with so many unanswered questions.

"You're going to go into a bank with a knife? When I saw it, I had to see it again. That's not her. That's not my baby," says Martha.

Vanessa's mother, sister and sister-in-law sat down with us. They're still in disbelief and struggling to understand what happened.

"We don't know what she was thinking. We don't blame the authorities or anything because she did that. But, other than what she did, she is a good person. She made a mistake and now she's going to have to pay," says Nikeya Ashford.

Nikeya is Vanessa's sister-in-law. She says everything has taken a toll on their family, and she hopes no one else has to endure this kind of pain.

"What I'm saying to everybody is: Talk to your family if you know somebody is going though something or going through a crisis," Nikeya says.

Vanessa's family says they know there is no excuse, but will always wish they could take it all back for her.

"That's not her. That's not my baby. I raised her better than that. Why did she do that? I don't have an answer for that," says Martha.

Vanessa Ashford is still in the Smith County Jail on a $750,000 bond. 

We're told Vanessa's family will be able to visit her tomorrow.

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