ELKTON, Md. (WJZ)— There’s sadness and outrage following the sudden death of a little girl struck by a stray bullet on New Year’s Eve.
Mike Hellgren has more on the push to find her killer.
This tragic case has provoked some passionate response. But at this point, police have not made any arrests.
Ten-year-old Aaliyah Boyer had a beautiful smile and love for life. Her senseless death is the talk of a stunned Cecil County.
Many are outraged that someone carelessly fired a weapon into the air to celebrate the New Year. The bullet lodged in the little girl’s head.
“I’m a mother of four, grandmother of five, and it brings tears to my eyes. I just can’t even explain,” one woman said.
“It’s serious to me because I have children. I have a 14-year-old daughter, 15-year-old son. Plus, my wife’s pregnant now,” a man said.
“I hope that this shows people that shooting a stray bullet can kill someone,” one woman said.
In areas that have seen similar tragedies, that outrage has turned to action with lawmakers pushing for and getting tougher penalties for those who are illegally firing their weapons.
For investigators in Cecil County, finding out who did this is priority. But they admit it’s difficult.
They have the bullet and are looking at registered weapons and sifting through tips. Police say there were reports of many people firing weapons that night.
A local business owner is one of many people struggling to make sense of the tragedy.
“I just don’t understand why, how this could happen,” she said. “It’s very sad. I couldn’t imagine losing a child and especially on a night when everybody’s supposed to be celebrating.”
Now the community is calling for action so that no other family has to live through this heartache.
“It’s a lot of people they hurt over this. It’s a shame ’cause she was such a young child,” a woman said.
“I come from a hunting family. None of us were ever taught that. We were taught to respect weapons,” a man said.
Aaliyah’s family donated her organs after she was taken off life support.
Cecil County Sheriff’s Office is leading the investigation, but they may call in state police for extra help.
The sheriff’s office is using firearms experts and has gone door-to-door looking for the person who fired that weapon.