A 1-year-old girl was killed in her babysitter’s arms when a gunman opened fire in New Orleans, where the police chief denounced the violence as “unacceptable.”
The 18-year-old woman who was taking little Londyn Samuels home from the park was wounded in Thursday night’s shooting in the Central City neighborhood.
She called the toddler’s father in anguish.
“She said, ‘Kee, we got shot — me and Londyn,’” the dad, Keion Reed, told NBC News as he made plans for a Saturday funeral.
“In the back of my head, this is a bad dream I haven’t woken up from yet.”
Police said two men were seen running from the scene after the shooting. After an appeal for tips from the public, detectives were questioning two women and a man on Friday, but no one had been charged.
“This is a time when the people and the city of New Orleans have to rally together,” Superintendent Ronal Serpas said at the scene, asking for witnesses to come forward.
“Let us go make these people accountable for what they did.”
Reed, 20, said his daughter’s death had left a hole in his heart.
“She just loved being around me and her mama. She was our world, you know? She was the highlight of every day,” he said.
“She was always happy. When I was down, she would crawl in the bed with me and say, ‘Dada,’ and hit me in the face to make me smile.”
Londyn’s uncle said he was at a football game when he received the terrible news.
“They said, ‘Londyn got shot,’ and I almost dropped my phone,” Tyrin Samuels, 23, told NBC News on Friday. “I said, ‘What? How could that be?’”
He rushed to the hospital where family and friends waited to hear if the little girl who was just learning to walk and who loved Minnie Mouse would survive.
When they were told she had died, her mother, Andrea Samuels, was inconsolable, he said.
Read the full report from NBC News here.