BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A local defense attorney pleads with his colleagues for help drumming up new leads in the unsolved case of a three-year-old girl who was murdered. McKenzie Elliott was hit by a stray bullet in a drive-by shooting in Baltimore’s Waverly neighborhood two months ago.
Derek Valcourt explains frustration is leading to new calls for justice in the case.
Police had a person of interest in the case, but he was never charged and released earlier this week. Now there’s a renewed effort to find the killer.
It’s been more than 71 days since three-year-old McKenzie Elliott was killed by a stray bullet from a drive-by shooting as she played on a neighbor’s front porch. Her parents are left devastated and wanting answers.
“I know for sure somebody saw something. Somebody’s going to speak up,” the victim’s father, Anthony Lipford, said.
An outraged community rallied around the family and the police commissioner promised a swift arrest.
“The person responsible, we will bring them to justice before the end of this week,” Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts said August 5.
But that didn’t happen, and to date, there are still no arrests in the case.
When a person of interest was released from custody Wednesday, the police department would only say it “has shifted the focus of the investigation and is actively pursuing leads.”
“This was not done in the dark of night. People know,” said Warren Brown, defense attorney.
Brown has no connection to the case. But out of empathy for McKenzie’s heartbroken parents, he’s now calling on his fellow criminal defense attorneys to ask around if any of their clients might have information helpful to police.
“Coming forward to the attorney shields them, actually, it allows them to provide the information without themselves going public with it,” Brown said.
“It’s just as much the community’s responsibility as the police,” said Rev. Dr. Andre Humphrey, Baltimore Trauma Response Team.
Rev. Dr. Humphrey believes local clergy should take an active role in helping to raise more reward money to encourage someone to turn in McKenzie’s killer.
“To know that you have a perpetrator out there that’s still living his life and going to sleep every night and waking up, I could imagine what it’s doing to the family,” he said.
WJZ wanted to talk to McKenzie Elliott’s mother about the latest developments in the case. She had no comment.
Anyone with information in the case can remain anonymous and even earn some reward money by calling Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7-LOCKUP.
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