Michigan girl, 12, shot to death in West Garfield Park

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A 12-year-old girl from Michigan was shot and killed while visiting family in West Garfield Park Thursday. (WLS)

A 12-year-old girl was killed and a 36-year-old man was wounded Thursday night after someone opened fire on a group of people on Chicago's West Side.

Relatives identified the child as She'Nyah O'Flynn, of Covert, Mich. She was visiting her stepfather in Chicago and planned to spend the summer in the city.

Her family said she was a bright student, who made straight A's and B's. She loved to dance and play soccer.

She would have celebrated her 13th birthday next month. But now, her relatives will have to plan her funeral.

Courtney O'Flynn, She'Nyah's aunt, broke down as she spoke about what her niece meant to her.

"My best friend. That was like my daughter. Every day, when I came home from school,that was my baby. That was my best friend," O'Flynn said, through tears. "We only 11 years apart. I got her tattooed on my wrist."

They said She'Nyah was holding her 1-year-old cousin in her arms when she was shot at a gathering in the 4200-block of West Wilcox Street in the city's West Garfield Park neighborhood. Police said the shooting occurred around 11:20 p.m.

The 36-year-old man, identified by relatives as Martell Bailey, was taking his family home from his son's 8th grade graduation party when they were shot. She'Nyah was his wife's cousin.

They were getting out of the car when shots rang out.

"They were going in the house. They thought it was firecrackers or Roman candles that were going off. It happened to be gun shots," said Linda Riley Bailey, Martell Bailey's mother.

Martell Bailey was shot in the ankle. She'Nyah was shot in the neck. They were rushed to Stroger Hospital, where She'Nyah was pronounced dead.

Bailey was treated and released.

"It's just traumatizing, a feeling that no one should ever go through, you know? Especially when you're out of town and you're trying to get here, and you're thinking your baby is safe, and your baby is deceased," said community activist Andrew Holmes.

Witnesses told police they saw two men firing shots in the area. Investigators said the two victims were not the intended targets.

Family members pleaded with those responsible, asking them to stop the violence.

"C'mon now, put the guns down. Put the guns down. You know, you're killing all the babies. You're shooting up people for no reason at all," Linda Riley Bailey said.

"You see babies and kids, you want them to have a future. You're just out here shooting recklessly," said Shamil Riley, Martell Bailey's brother.

No one is in custody. Area North detectives are investigating.
Related Topics:
child killedchicago shootingchild shotChicagoWest Garfield ParkMichigan
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