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Child fatally shot in South Bend; Metro Homicide investigating

Published: Aug. 29, 2020 at 8:40 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - A 7-year-old girl who was shot Saturday while attending another child’s birthday party has died from her injuries.

Police were called to the 800 block of E. Donald St. in South Bend for reports of a shooting at 7:41 p.m.

They arrived to find the girl shot and in very serious condition. Medics took her to a local hospital where she would later be pronounced dead.

She has been identified as seven-year-old Chrisyah Stephens.

According to the St. Joseph County Metro Homicide Unit, initial information received was that multiple shots were fired from a vehicle driving past the home. Although there were numerous people in front of the home when the shooting occurred, the child was the only person hit by the gunfire.

South Bend Police tell us Metro Homicide has taken over the investigation.

South Bend Mayor James Mueller released this statement:

“I was shocked to hear that the life of an innocent child was cut tragically short by senseless violence,” said Mayor James Mueller. “This is simply unacceptable and cannot be allowed to continue in our city. We must unite together as a community to break the cycle of violence and seek justice through our legal system. Please reach out to the St. Joseph County Metro Homicide Unit at 574-235-5009 or South Bend Police Department detectives at 574-235-9263 if you have any information on the perpetrators of these violent acts.”

South Bend Police Chief Scott Ruszkowski issued the following statement:

“Just this weekend, we’ve already had 4 people shot. One being an innocent 7-year-old girl, playing at a birthday party. We’re almost at 100 people criminally shot this year. As a community, we can no longer accept this senseless violence and we all have to do our part.”

“I have extra patrols, detectives working nearly 24/7 to solve these crimes with no one speaking up, the Strategic Focus Unit is working every angle to get in front of this to prevent these careless acts and lawless behavior. I have our officers and dozens of community leaders, especially SAVE, reaching out and pleading for this to stop."

“Life doesn’t have to be and shouldn’t be like this, but in order for it to stop, our community has to say and do something. These shootings can be avoided well before becoming a police matter. As a community, we must make this our mission.”

An autopsy is scheduled for Monday morning in Fort Wayne.

Anyone with information to this case is asked to contact the CMHU at 574-235-5009 or Crime Stoppers at 574-288-STOP.

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