Woman killed, four children injured in Alabama Easter Sunday shooting

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DeMicia Inman
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Birmingham native Rickey Smiley is offering a reward for information leading to an arrest in the fatal shooting

A tragic shooting on Easter Sunday left one woman dead and several injured when shots rang out in a neighborhood park.

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According to WSFA 12 News, the shooting took place at Patton Park in Birmingham, Alabama where hundreds were gathered to celebrate the religious holiday. Gunfire erupted around 7 p.m. and one person, Areyelle Yarborough, was killed. She was pronounced dead at the scene near her vehicle door.

A 21-year-old, a 17-year-old, a 16-year-old, a 15-year-old, and a five-year-old were also shot during the chaos.

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(Adobe Stock)

Birmingham police released an official statement confirming that an argument of some kind resulted in the shooting.

“The preliminary investigation indicates the shooting stemmed from an altercation amongst two groups of males which escalated to an exchange of gunfire in the crowded park. Evidence collected indicates over 30 rounds were fired.”

The statement continued, “Detectives have obtained witness accounts; however additional witnesses are encouraged to come forward. No arrest[s] have been made in this investigation. It is believed there were multiple shooters involved in this incident,” the department revealed.

According to the memo, this is Birmingham’s 22nd murder investigation of 2021.

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Alabama reported that witnesses claimed the men “didn’t even know what they were shooting at,” and that nearly 100 shots were fired during the ordeal. A witness said that after one person opened fire, multiple people began shooting, and in different directions.

Witness accounts said police and ambulances were having trouble getting into the park as people fled the scene and that Yarborough was fatally shot while protecting children from bullets.

According to the outlet, comedian, radio host, and Birmingham native Rickey Smiley has offered a reward of $5K for information on Yarborough’s death. WSFA 12 News reported his offer has been matched by the Birmingham Urban League bringing the reward total to $10K.

“I’m really angry today,” Smiley said, according to Alabama, adding that he is close to the Yarborough family. “It’s time for the community to stand up. Everybody was out there at the park on Facebook Live. You know who did it. Turn it into the police department.”

BET Super Bowl Gospel - Red Carpet
Rickey Smiley attends the BET Super Bowl Gospel Celebration on January 30, 2020 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for BET)

Smiley continued, “Stop this no-snitch policy. What does it prove? How is that cool?”

Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin addressed the community with similar sentiments.

“All of us should be angry. If you’re not, I don’t know. All of us should be sad, and if you’re not, I don’t know,” Woodfin said. “I don’t understand why a 32-year-old innocent Black woman has to die when she’s just minding her own business, enjoying Easter Sunday in the park. A park is supposed to be a safe place.”

“There has to be some type of rule in place – no women, no children,’’ the mayor said. “If that’s violated, no-snitching shouldn’t even be part of the conversation.”

The outlet reports all of the surviving victims are currently in stable condition. Anyone with information has been asked to call Birmingham police at 205-254-1764 or Crime Stoppers at 205-254-7777.

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The post Woman killed, four children injured in Alabama Easter Sunday shooting appeared first on TheGrio.