Grandmother of 1-Year-Old North Carolina Girl Who Was Shot in Drive-by says Local Churches Were Not There for Her Family


The grandmother of a Chapel Hill toddler killed a week ago in a drive-by shooting lashed out Friday at local churches, saying they have provided little support for the family. 

Maleah Williams, 1, was shot in the head outside her family’s apartment in the 700 block of Trinity Court on Christmas Day, and she died Monday at UNC Hospitals.

“I’m trying to hear an apology and to get an understanding why none of these churches reached out, came by to say, ‘How you doing?'” Clarissa Farrington said. “I didn’t get a phone call. I didn’t see no one at the hospital. So, I don’t really feel like the community was there.”

The NAACP and religious groups held a memorial service for Maleah on Friday afternoon at St. Joseph’s CME Church in Chapel Hill, and the NAACP planned to hold a vigil for her at the apartment complex on Friday evening.

At the beginning of the memorial service, Michelle Laws, executive director of the state branch of the NAACP, provided the apology Farrington sought.

“I’m sorry that our community did not stand quickly enough and fast enough. We can’t change the past because, if we could, Maleah would be here,” Laws said.

North Carolina NAACP President Rev. William Barber demanded an end to violence and more action from the black community.

“We must stop these funerals,” Barber said. “Why the hell are we killing ourselves? We must have a revival, a revival of our self-worth.”

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Source: WRAL | Arielle Clay, Matthew Burns