Wis. 9-Year-Old Who Was Struck by Stray Bullet Dies Days After Asking if Police Could Keep Her Safe

Facebook via Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

A 9-year-old Wisconsin girl who was struck by a stray bullet on Milwaukee's north side succumbed to her injuries Monday afternoon, the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed. 

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Za'layia Jenkins was pronounced brain-dead at 5 p.m. According to the Journal Sentinel, Za'layia had spoken to police and asked if they could help keep her safe about a week prior. Za'layia was hit after a bullet came through the wall of her home as she was watching TV around 8:30 p.m. May 5. 


The shooting occurred during an exchange of gunfire between two armed groups. Afterward, police reportedly recovered more than 40 shell casings, Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said, according to the Journal Sentinel. Police are still looking for a green Jeep Cherokee whose driver they believe may have information about the shooting. 

Before Za'layia died, a rally had been scheduled in her honor on Tuesday—which would have been her 10th birthday.

About a week before she was shot, Za'layia had an opportunity to speak to Milwaukee Police Capt. Shunta Boston-Smith, who was in the neighborhood at the time. Za'layia asked Boston-Smith why she was in the neighborhood, to which Boston-Smith replied that they were patrolling to help keep the neighborhood safe. Za'layia then reportedly asked the police captain if police could keep her safe.

"Sadly, that question was answered tonight," Flynn said after the girl was shot.

Read more at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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