Grandfather: Stray bullet killed DC boy grabbing phone charger

Published: Jul. 6, 2020 at 2:48 AM CDT
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WASHINGTON (AP/WJLA/CNN) - An 11-year-old boy who was grabbing a phone charger on the way to a community cookout in Washington was struck and killed by a stray bullet Saturday night, his grandfather said.

John Ayala told WUSA-TV that his 11-year-old grandson Davon McNeal was getting out of a car to go get the charger when shots rang out near the Frederick Douglass Community Center.

Washington D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham told reporters late Saturday that about five adult men shot up the area, striking an 11-year-old boy who later died at a hospital. D.C. police are asking for the public's help in gathering information on the shooting, including any sightings of a black car they say fled the alley.

Davon McNeal, 11, was smart, loved football and learned from his mom the importance of giving...
Davon McNeal, 11, was smart, loved football and learned from his mom the importance of giving back to the community, according to his grandfather.(Source: John Ayala/WJLA/CNN)

“He was just getting out of a car to go get a charger to charge his phone while he was going to a cookout, that’s it,” said Ayala, who is the chief of the Archangel Special Police, which operate in Washington, Maryland and Virginia. “And when he stepped out the car, the shots rang and he fell to the ground. The mother thought that he was ducking to not get hit and came to find out he had got shot.”

Ayala said his grandson loved playing sports, especially football. But he also was by his mother's side while she has taken donations, hosted events and set up cookouts to create awareness against street violence, Ayala said.

"Eleven-year-old son is right on the side seeing that stuff, getting that role model, you know, and that was what we need in the Black community," Ayala said.

Ayala says his grandson’s death won’t stop his fight against crime in the area. If anything, it will push him to keep going, but he says it takes help from residents.

“Stop believing in the ‘snitches get stitches.’ Stop going in your house, dropping the shades, putting extra locks on your door, buying a pit bull so nobody can come to you. No, you have to open up the shades, unlock the door, sit on your porch and let the criminals know: ‘We’re not allowing you to do this here. If you do it, I’m going to report it,’” Ayala said.

On Twitter, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser also offered her thoughts and prayers for the boy's family.

“A mother lost her 11 year old son to gun fire tonight,” Bowser tweeted.

D.C. Police currently offers a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone that provides information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the persons responsible for any homicide committed in the city.

Copyright 2020 Associated Press and WJLA, John Ayala via CNN. All rights reserved.