SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. (WNCN) — Southern Pines Police made two arrests over the weekend in a broad-daylight drive-by shooting that claimed the life of a child Friday.
They charged 16-year-old Montice McManus with murder and assault with a deadly weapon. He’s in jail without bond. Police also charged 20-year old Malik Crawford with accessory after the fact. He’s being held on a $300,000 bond.
The drive by shooting killed 12-year-old Jalinda Campbell and injured three-year-old Kyleigh Graham, who were sitting on the porch of the targeted house. Family members say Kyleigh is in stable condition.
Jalinda’s family, still grappling with the sudden loss, came together to remember her life Sunday evening. While lighting candles and filling balloons they reflected on what a joyous child Jalinda was.
They held a moment of silence before releasing balloons for Jalinda.
As their balloons scattered into the evening sky they vowed to bring their community together.
“This here we won’t tolerate. You know if this is the life that you choose, well we’re not going to have this with our kids,” said Jalinda’s dad Greg Harris.
“It’s got to stop. It’s got to stop,” said Jerry McLaughlin, who lives near the shooting scene.
The arrests are somewhat easing the pain for Jalinda’s family as they cling to each other for support.
The porch of the home where Jalinda was shot and killed is now a tribute to her life. Heart-filled messages, candles, balloons and other tokens, are signs of how much she was loved.
Harris told CBS North Carolina that when he learned of the two arrests in his daughter’s death he was overwhelmed.
“This is one that I can say the strong arm of the law really reached out to the community and did everything that was possible able to bring these people to justice,” said Harris.
Harris says it doesn’t matter what kind of background the young men have; what they did is unacceptable.
“I don’t know what would make someone do anything of this magnitude,” said Harris.
Residents in the area agree that the violence is senseless.
“We’ve been hearing gunshots all the time,” said McLaughlin, who lives two blocks from where the shooting happened.
Southern pines police say the investigation is ongoing and urge anyone with information to give the department a call at (910) 692-7031, the Investigation Division of the Southern Pines Police Department at (910) 693-1481, or the Crime Tip Line at (910) 693-4110.