Girl, 8 years old, shot dead in Atlanta
In Atlanta, an 8-year-old girl was killed and killed on July 4 after at least two people in an armed crowd opened fire on a car in which she was driving near a flash of recent Atlanta protests.
Police identified the girl as Secoriea Turner and Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms sought justice during an emotional press conference on Sunday with the girl’s grief-stricken mother.
The shooting took place near Wendy’s restaurant, where an African American man, Rayshard Brooks, was killed by an Atlanta police officer on June 12th. The fast food restaurant was subsequently burned and the area became a venue for frequent demonstrations against police brutality.
Authorities reported that the mother had attempted to cross illegally placed barricades in the area when the vehicle went on fire Saturday night.
“You shot and killed a child,” said the mayor, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “And there wasn’t just one shooter, there were at least two shooters.”
In a Sunday statement, police said the girl was in the car with her mother and a mother’s friend and that they were trying to get into a nearby parking lot. They met a group of armed individuals who had blocked the entrance.
“At some point, someone in that group opened fire on the vehicle, hitting it multiple times and hitting the child inside,” reads the statement. The driver took the girl to the Atlanta Medical Center but did not survive.
Police said they are seeking help from the public to identify the people involved and released a wanted poster that says one person in black and another in a white shirt was wanted.
The mayor said there were problems with protesters in the area who created barriers to blocking the road. She said she received a message that the barriers would go back less than an hour before being informed that the 8-year-old girl had died.
“An 8-year-old girl was killed last night because her mother was driving on the street,” Bottoms said. “If Secoriea wasn’t safe last night, none of us are safe.”