Overview of Ashleigh Love
Ashleigh Love enjoyed living life to the fullest, spending quality time with family and friends.
Ashleigh Love was 19 years old when she was brutally murdered in her family's Milwaukee home during a break-in. Ashleigh is described by family and friends as a sweet girl who preferred to stay out of the spotlight, humble, and shy about her accomplishments.
From a young age, she enjoyed baking and playing sports. Ashleigh also loved reading Harry Potter books, listening to music, and playing board games with friends. She loved going to the movies and cheering on Milwaukee sports teams. Ashleigh’s peers described her as being hard-working and a friend to all. Ashleigh graduated from Pius XI High School in June 2009 with honors and at the top of her class and she was well-liked by her teachers.
The day Ashleigh was murdered.
On October 5, 2009, Ashleigh worked the closing shift at Arby’s. Her mom, Tammy, picked her up and they went back home. Ashleigh spent the evening watching a Green Bay Packers football game with her family. Later that evening, Ashleigh showered and went to bed-- an ordinary evening in the Love household.
At around 2:00 a.m. on October 6, an intruder broke into the Love home and went to Ashleigh’s bedroom on the second floor. He then shot her in the face with a shotgun while she was in her bed. Tammy was jolted awake and heard footsteps running down the stairs. Tammy got out of bed and opened her bedroom door. The intruder was standing in front of the door with the shotgun still in hand. While staring at the intruder outside her door, Tammy thought the family was being robbed, so she started to scream, and said, “Take whatever you want and please leave”. The intruder then ran out of the home through a door.
Tammy shouted to Joe Love, Ashleigh's father, to go check on Ashleigh. He went to her upstairs bedroom, and called out, “Ashleigh, Ashleigh,” but she didn’t answer. He went into her room, which was dark. Eventually, he got a good look and realized that Ashleigh had been shot.
Ashleigh's murder was quickly ruled out as a robbery, as nothing had been taken from the Love home. Investigators believe Ashleigh was targeted but the motive still remains unknown.
Who is the intruder that killed Ashleigh?
Tammy Love is the only one in the household who saw the intruder that night. The intruder had a bandana concealing the lower half of his face, and a dark zippered sweater or jacket. He was a Hispanic male, around 20 years old, with an average height and build. He had short, spiked black hair. Tammy believes that the intruder could've had an accomplice, but that detail from that night is difficult for her to recall.
Many theories have been discussed around Ashleigh's murder including an angry ex-coworker, a secret friend, or an acquaintance from a party Ashleigh attended. However, none of these theories have enough credible evidence to solve Ashleigh's murder.
Where the case stands today.
In June of 2012, Ashleigh's case went cold. Despite new investigators being assigned to the case, no new leads have developed. In 2014, the Love family created the Letters for Ashleigh documentary in an attempt to encourage people with information to come forward and solve Ashleigh's murder.
Around the 10th anniversary of Ashleigh's murder, the Love family wanted to kick up the dust on Ashleigh's case and draw some attention in hopes of gaining justice for Ashleigh. In November of 2022, the Love & Justice podcast was released, with 10 episodes detailing Ashleigh's life, the night of the murder, and the impact its had on her family. While Ashleigh's case still remains unsolved, the Love & Justice podcast prompted individuals who knew Ashleigh to come forward with tips.
The Love family is offering a $12,000 reward for any information that leads to an arrest, conviction, or identification of the individual(s) responsible for Ashleigh's death. Anyone with information can contact Milwaukee Police at (414) 935-7360 or send a tip — named or anonymously — to the podcast website. https://www.loveandjusticepodcast.com/contact.html
This case research is courtesy of Haley Gray. Since 2016, Haley has been a renowned true crime researcher and writer for over 20 podcasts, including My Favorite Murder, Generation Why, Detective Perspective, and Voices for Justice. She is the Co-Founder, Co-CEO, and Research Specialist for True Crime Podcast Training.