LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The story of Amber Stepp is one involving drug use and criminal activity.

Over the last two years, Stepp faced several charges in Jefferson County, including wanton endangerment, shoplifting, and drug offenses.

“It started really young. She was probably 13, if not a little bit younger,” said Stepp's mother, Loretta Gribbins.

Gribbins says she tried so many times to get her daughter clean, but it never seemed to work. Gribbins was left to care for Stepp's two young children.

Recently though, Stepp appeared to be doing better.

“She was coming around and spending a lot more time with the kids,” said Gribbins. “She was here Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday. Made a big to-do of Mother’s Day, and we had a good time.”

The next day though, the 28-year-old was shot and killed along Rowan Street near South 25th in Louisville.

“I just, I didn’t believe it. It’s something I told her for years was gonna happen-- that I was gonna get a phone call one day and that’s how they’d find her, in the gutter. And well, I was close.”

Despite the hard times, Gribbins says her daughter remained funny, energetic, and giving. She says Stepp had attended Ivy Tech and Indiana University Southeast.

Gribbins says she wants her daughter's senseless death to serve as a cautionary tale, showing how drug abuse can tear families apart.

“There’s more and more kids getting killed over needless and senseless things,” said Gribbins. “No parent should have to go through the loss of a child this way.”

Stepp did not have life insurance. A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Stepp’s family with funeral expenses.

According to the family, Stepp’s viewing will be at Newcomer Funeral Home on Sunday from 1 to 6 p.m. Her burial will be Monday at 10 a.m.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to contact the Louisville Metro Police tipline at 502-574-LMPD. Callers can remain anonymous.

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