Police: Girl killed by gunfire during birthday party in Ohio

Posted at 11:25 AM, Aug 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-16 11:25:56-04

AKRON, Ohio -- An 8-year-old girl was shot and killed during a backyard birthday party for a teenager at an Ohio home, authorities said.

Akron police said several shots were fired shortly before midnight Friday in the Sherbondy Hill neighborhood. The 8-year-old was found wounded and was taken to Akron Children's Hospital, where she later died, police said.

Authorities identified the girl Saturday as Mikayla Pickett, a student at Portage Path Community Learning Center, according to an Akron Public Schools spokesperson. The Summit County medical examiner's office plans an autopsy.

Willie Walker, 62, told the Akron Beacon-Journal that he was hosting an outdoor birthday party for his 15-year-old grandson in his backyard when the shooting occurred. Walker, who has lived at the home for 32 years, said he was inside when the gunfire started.

“All hell broke out,” he said. “I don’t know what the hell happened.”

Walker said three or four people apparently showed up at the property and started shooting at family members and friends who were at the party. Police officers found multiple shell casings at the scene, he said.

“I don’t know know how many shells they took,” he said. “A lot of them.”

No arrests were immediately reported.