Neighbor shoots 9-year-old girl in the head after she buys ice cream in Chicago

A tragic incident

A 9-year-old girl was fatally shot in the head by her neighbor in front of her father after buying ice cream and riding her scooter in Chicago, according to a legal document. The incident happened on Saturday evening, August 5, 2023, in the Portage Park neighborhood of the city.

Neighbor shoots 9-year-old girl

The girl, identified as Serabi Medina, was outside her home with her father and three friends when one of them gave her money to buy ice cream from a nearby ice cream truck. She brought back two treats, one for her father and one for herself, and was riding her scooter on the sidewalk when they heard a gunshot in the vicinity.

Her father told her to go inside their house with her scooter, but as she was approaching the front door of her apartment building, the neighbor, identified as Michael Goodman, 43, came out of his building across the street holding a gun.

A senseless act of violence

The father and the friends saw Goodman walking toward Serabi and shouted at him to ask what he was doing. Goodman ignored them and followed Serabi to the vestibule of her building. He then raised the gun, pointed it at Serabi and shot her in the head.

The father ran toward his daughter and tackled Goodman into the vestibule. As they both fell to the ground, the gun discharged again, striking Goodman in the eye. Serabi was taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead. Goodman was arrested and taken to another hospital.

Police swabbed Goodman’s hands while he was in the hospital and they tested positive for gunshot residue. A 9mm Canik firearm was recovered outside of the apartment. Goodman is currently being held with no bail after authorities’ request.

A community in shock and grief

The shooting has shocked and saddened the community where Serabi lived. A memorial with flowers, balloons, candles and stuffed animals was set up outside her home. Neighbors and strangers have expressed their condolences and outrage over the senseless killing of a child.

A GoFundMe page was launched to help Serabi’s family with funeral and related expenses. It has raised over $6,000 so far. The page describes Serabi as a “beautiful angel” who loved to dance, sing and play with her friends.

The shooting also comes as the US continues to grapple with widespread gun violence, which is the leading cause of death in children and teenagers in the country. According to data from Everytown for Gun Safety, there have been at least 275 unintentional shootings by children in 2023, resulting in 97 deaths and 191 injuries.

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