Uncle arrested, charged with killing 4-year-old girl; family says it was an accident

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — A DeKalb County man has been charged with killing his 4-year-old niece. But the family of the little girl, including her mother, says he did not do it.

The shooting happened Monday night at the Summit Hill Apartments on Bouldercrest Road in DeKalb County.

Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes spoke to the young child’s family Tuesday, who said they are absolutely devastated.

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They said not only are they grieving girl’s death, but another relative is behind bars facing second-degree murder.

They say they told police the child accidentally shot herself, but for some reason, police made the arrest anyway.

“My baby loved her uncle to death,” the child’s mother told Fernandes, asking not to be identified.

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The family identified the 4-year-old victim as Janiya Jenkins.

“He keeps on asking for her and I don’t know what to say,” the mother said the girl’s twin brother is asking.

DeKalb County police arrested Levante Cummings, 27, Monday night in connection to the shooting.

He is the woman’s brother.

Police say he shot and killed his niece Janiya. His charges range from cruelty to a child to second-degree murder.

But the suspect’s sister, who is also Janiya’s mother, said the only thing her brother is guilty of is falling asleep and leaving his gun out.

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“My baby shot herself. My brother did not shoot her,” the mother said.

“Why do you think police charged him when he didn’t do it?” Fernandes asked the mother.

“I don’t know, because when they talked to me, I told them my brother was asleep,” the mother said.

Fernandes said she contacted police to report what the family told her and asked them if they had ruled out the possibility that the little girl accidentally shot herself.

She is still waiting on a response from the department.

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