In a tragic incident in Brooklyn, New York, 16-year-old Shemel Mercerius was gunned down by who officials believe was her boyfriend, Taariq Stephens, 24. Mercerius helped bring her killer to justice right before her death, however, as she reportedly called out the young man's name before she passed out and later died.
According to the New York Daily News, Stephens was questioned at the 67th precinct after he turned himself in to the police on Thursday evening. NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce told the New York Post, "He [Stephens] is the shooter. You see him with the backpack. He gets on to the elevator and takes it directly to the floor she's on."
This is in reference to security camera footage that was turned over to the police and edited before being given to the public because the original recording was too graphic.
Shemel's grandmother, Joan, also told the newspaper that her granddaughter "died before she got to the hospital." She however did not die before giving authorities a clear indication as to who her killer was, as Joan recounted, "But before she died she gave the cops her boyfriend's name. She told them he shot her."
At the time of the shooting, Shemel was looking after her 3-year-old cousin, Josiah. His mother told CBS New York that when she asked her son what happened, the toddler responded, "Shemel died." When his mother asked how, he said, "The man took the gun and went boom."
Our thoughts and prayers are with Shemel and her family in this difficult time.
(Photo: Shemel Mercurius via Facebook)