Mother of Teen Girl Fatally Shot: "It's An Ongoing War"

Seventeen-year-old Gakirah Barnes was fatally shot Friday around 3:30 p.m. in the 6400 block of South Eberhart Avenue in the city's Woodlawn neighborhood

View Comments (


    A 17-year old girl was one of 2 people shot and killed as violence erupted in the city. Fourteen others have been wounded since Friday. NBC 5’s Emily Florez reports.

    For Shontell Brown, the statistics on Chicago's violence are more than just numbers.

    In roughly 12 hours, 16 people were shot across Chicago, two of them fatally, including Brown's oldest child.

    16 Shot in Chicago Weekend Violence

    16 Shot in Chicago Weekend Violence
    At least 16 people have been shot, two of them fatally, across Chicago since Friday. Emily Florez reports.

    "It's really sad," Brown said Saturday. "It's an ongoing war and we don't know what for."

    Seventeen-year-old Gakirah Barnes was fatally shot Friday around 3:30 p.m. in the 6400 block of South Eberhart Avenue in the city's Woodlawn neighborhood, authorities said.

    She suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the upper body and was taken to Northwestern Memorial hospital, according to Chicago Police News Affairs Officer Thomas Sweeney. She was pronounced dead at 5:43 p.m., the Cook County Medical Examiner's office said.

    Two others were injured in the shooting.

    Police are still investigating what happened in the afternoon shooting, but neighbors say Barnes and a friend were walking along the sidewalk when a gunman started firing in their direction. The impact of the bullets was so powerful it threw Barnes onto the steps of a nearby residence, neighbors said.

    Residents, who did not want to be named, said Barnes fought to live, but had been shot at least nine times.

    "I went and got a towel to try to plug up the hole to stop the bleeding, but it was coming from her chest and everything," one resident said.

    Family members say Barnes loved basketball, her friends and being with her family.

    "She loved music, being with her friends, to go outside and play with her baby sister, play video games," Brown said. "Me and her would play music on our iPhones and sit around and laugh and talk and joke. She was a very loved girl, a very loved girl."

    Residents say Barnes isn't the first teen victim in the area.

    "I wanted to cry because I have two children who have been murdered," one resident said. "I wish they'd stay off this neighborhood. I wish they'd get off them guns and stop killing everybody senselessly. What are you killing for? What is it accomplishing? Nobody owns these neighborhoods."

    Working with several agencies, Barnes' mother has collected a $10,000 reward for the person who brings forward the information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

    "I love her and I'm going to fight for her justice because I don't think it's fair that we are losing our kids, being gunned down in the streets-- it's not fair," Brown said. "She wasn't for someone to take away like that...I won't be silent on this. I won't be."

    As of Saturday evening, no one was in custody for the shooting.