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Confess to daughter's killing, mother pleads

TREVOR HAGAN / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS 
Laverne Daniels (rear) consoles her daughter, Amanda Hornbrook, at a vigil for April Hornbrook Wednesday evening.

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TREVOR HAGAN / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Laverne Daniels (rear) consoles her daughter, Amanda Hornbrook, at a vigil for April Hornbrook Wednesday evening.

The mother of a young woman whose body was discovered in a Main Street back lane urges those who witnessed the crime to come forward.

Police have made no arrests in the death of April Helen Hornbrook, a 24-year-old who was the city's 28th homicide victim of 2011.

Wednesday night, Hornbrook's friends and family held a vigil near the desolate back lane where her body was found. Her clothed body was near a trail that goes between an old warehouse and train tracks.

"Whoever did this... come forward," said Laverne Daniels, 40, Hornbrook's biological mother.

"Just come forward. Any witnesses, come forward. Let us know."

Hornbrook had grown up in foster care but later reconnected with her biological family.

Her mother said Hornbrook had a place where she stayed in East Kildonan at the time of her death.

"There was never any after-care from Child and Family Services that we were aware of and this is what happens to our children who are placed in care... when they become of age they are tossed out and that's it," said Joe Daniels, Hornbrook's great-uncle. Hornbrook's four-year-old son did not live with her, family said.

Her great-uncle urged the police to keep family apprised of developments in the case.

Officers from the homicide unit continue to investigate.

"We hope that (police) will not forget about April and continue to work finding the person or persons who did this," said Joe Daniels.

Hornbrook's body was found near an area known as the low track, a well-known spot for sex-trade workers waiting for people to pick them up.

Laverne Daniels said her daughter wasn't involved in the sex trade.

But Hornbrook knew violence -- her mother said she'd been beaten earlier this year after she was pulled out of a vehicle where she was sleeping.

Daniels last saw her daughter at a Main Street hotel two days before her body was discovered, she said.

Police have not released Hornbrook's cause of death, but family say she sustained such damage to her body a closed casket was required at the funeral.

gabrielle.giroday@freepress.mb.ca

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