UPDATE: The Mobile Police Department identified Darius Lucky, Jr.,18, as a third subject in the shooting death of Cailee Knight, 9. Lucky will be charged with felony murder.
Mobile police announced two arrests in the shooting death of nine-year-old Cailee Knight. Tyrone Williams, 19, and Ariel Curry, 22, face charges of felony murder.
Knight was shot while she was asleep in a home in the 1000 block of Rhett Drive.
Officers responded to the scene around 2:14 a.m. Tuesday. Knight was taken to the hospital, where she died.
Mobile Police Chief Paul Prine said there were multiple children inside the residence. No one else was injured.
Prine was visibly emotional when announcing the arrest Thursday night.
"Please share my condolences and my prayer with the family," Prine said. "This is an update on an arrest that has been made and we'll talk about that in just a minute but it's an update on the arrest of two individuals, thus far, that caused the life of Miss Cailee Knight, our sweet child in our community, okay. And we're bringing justice for Cailee."
Prine said gang activity led to the "senseless" shooting. He believes the victim's brother and one of the shooters were involved in a dispute.
"We still believe today that it is involving gang activity," Prine added. "You know, that seems to be a thing that's plagued not only Mobile's community but nationwide. When you look at the demographics involved in a lot of the gang activity, it hasn't changed, whether it's in Mobile or whether it's in New York, it's still 15 to 25."
"It just goes to really show you — and you may have heard me the other day when I was really upset when I gave the initial press — is that it seems we've lost the last two or three generations," he continued. "They have a wanton disregard for human life. When you add that to no oversight from family, whether it's the mom or dad or the grandparents, you know, kids that are left to their own devices, their own senses, their own morality of what's right or wrong, couple that with a subculture of violence that we see amongst our children."
Prine said that now, police are left to pick up the pieces. He is asking all leaders in the community and state to put aside politics and stand for the community.
"Our leaders in our community, we are all going to have to learn to put down politics, lay aside our differences: ethnicity, culture race," Prine stated. "If we don't stand for something, we should all agree that we want to live in a safe society. And I'm asking all of our community and state leaders, even our de facto leaders in the community, join hands with the police department because if this baby's death won't bring us together, I'm confident nothing will."
The suspects are also charged with shooting into an occupied dwelling in connection to a shooting that happened earlier in the morning on Racine Avenue. No injuries were reported there.
Investigators did not specify which of the two suspects was the actual shooter. Charges could be upgraded pending a grand jury decision.
The investigation into the homicide is ongoing.
Both suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty.
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