A shooting Friday night in an Akron, Ohio, neighborhood killed a 4-year-old girl and left an adult in critical condition, according to police.
The shooting did not take place near any protests railing against police in response to the death of Jayland Walker late last month and are not believed to be connected to the demonstrations, police said. Walker was fatally shot by police on June 27 after he tried to flee an attempted traffic stop.
Akron Police began receiving calls about gunshots at about 9:15 p.m., Police Chief Steve Mylett said, according to the Akron Beacon Journal.
Both the girl and the man were shot at a family celebration, according to police.
The girl was left with head trauma after she was shot in the head. She was taken to Akron Children’s Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries, police said.
The man, 40, is in critical condition and was fighting for his life following the shooting. He was transported to Cleveland Clinic Akron General Hospital to receive treatment for his injuries.
The two individuals were struck after someone shot a gun into a crowd in Akron’s Summit Lake neighborhood late Friday night.
Officers had secured the children’s hospital for an outdoor press conference.
Police said the shooting occurred in a large group outside, but offered few additional details, including what led to the deadly shooting.
“It was multiple shots fired. We found numerous casings,” the police chief said. “The investigation is just beginning.”
Akron’s mayor, the police chief and Black pastors in the city all called on Walker protesters to stop demonstrating for the next two days out of respect for the 4-year-old’s family, according to the Journal.
“I talked to the mom and grandmother. There’s a heartbreak in the city,” Mayor Dan Horrigan said. “And talking about the level of tension that is out there. A number of pastors talked about deescalation and looking for nonviolent justice and peace. People have a right to protest … but we need to drop the temperature a little bit in the community because it’s hurting.”