• 'They took an innocent child': 7-year-old killed by stray bullet honored at vigil

    By: Steve Gehlbach

    Updated:

    DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - Dozens of balloons decorated the night sky in memory of a 7-year-old who died after a stray bullet hit her inside her foster home.

    She died in a hospital Monday, 10 days after the shooting. A vigil was held Tuesday night in honor of Mariasia Thomas.

    Channel 2’s Steve Gehlbach spoke to the girl’s biological mother, who said she had been trying to get back custody of her daughter to come live with her.

    She was shot April 12 while just sitting inside the DeKalb County home on the couch watching TV. Police said someone fired randomly, spraying the home with bullets.


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    Thomas was shot in the head and rushed to a hospital.

    Police said they’re working some leads and more than one person may be involved. There is a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

    The little girl’s mother told Gehlbach her daughter fought and she stayed with her right until the end.

    “The wound she had in her head was very serious. They did everything they could to save her but there was nothing else they could do. She wasn’t breathing on her own, she wasn’t responding the whole time she was in the hospital. She was basically on life support,” Chanrica Boyd said. 

    Mariasia’s cousin, just a year older, urged the shooter to turn themselves in to police, "because we miss her and I think they did it to her and don’t deserve to be out of jail," she said.

    Mariasia's family said the home may have been targeted in retaliation for a robbery involving someone who’d been staying there. 

    The family wants to catch the suspect now wanter for murder.

    “I really need someone to come to justice because they killed my child and she had a whole life in front of her," Boyd said.

    The family is asking for help with funeral expenses. You can donate to the GoFundMe account HERE

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