Community mourns, honors teen girl killed in Lansing shooting

‘We have to take these people off the street, they do not belong on the street’
Published: Dec. 15, 2021 at 10:39 PM EST
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - A community came together Wednesday to honor and remember a 17-year-old girl who was killed in Lansing.

Original Story: Teen killed, infant among 3 injured in Lansing shooting

Arianna Delacruz was fatally shot Friday morning. The shooting injured two other teens and a 10-week-old boy. A 17-year-old boy was arraigned Tuesday in connection with the shooting.

Delacruz’s uncle, Joseph Bermudez, organized an event on Wednesday to raise funds to help her family.

It’s not the first time Bermudez has gone through the tragedy of losing a family member to gun violence. His brother was shot and killed 10 years ago. Bermudez said having to go through it again a decade later has been devastating.

“It triggers everything. I know exactly what they’re going through,” Bermudez said. “I was with them when they picked out the casket with her sisters. We were just trying to hold back tears. It’s sad.”

After his brother’s death, Bermudez and others started an advocacy group to combat gun violence called Stop the Violence.

Delacruz is the 24th homicide in Lansing in 2021. Bermudez said one of his biggest concerns as the years have gone by is seeing the majority of gun crimes transition from adults to teenagers.

“It’s just tragic. It’s beginning to be more younger kids that are doing it now,” Bermudez said. “It’s just getting worse out here. It’s got to start at home with the parents. They’re putting their guns in their hands in some cases.”

Lansing resident Diamonte Montgomery, 22, said he believes keeping young people active and showing them hope for their future are key elements to stopping crime.

“Honestly, I think we need more role models in the community,” Montgomery said. “Just having more aspirations and career paths that young people could take. Then maybe that could deter from certain things because just having a future and stuff to do outside of just doing stuff in the street is a help for everybody.”

Related: ‘Nobody feels safe’ -- Lansing community responds to fatal shooting of teen

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