DETROIT (AP) — A Detroit grandmother testified Monday that she could only watch in terror as masked police officers with guns drawn stormed her home in a hunt for a murder suspect that led to the fatal shooting of her 7-year-old granddaughter Aiyana Stanley-Jones.
Officer Joseph Weekley is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the May 2010 death of the girl, who was asleep on a couch when police raided the house.
Aiyana’s grandmother, 50-year-old Mertilla Jones, said after a flash-bang grenade exploded through a window she rolled onto the floor and was lying on her stomach facing the door when Detroit special response team members forced their way inside.
“As soon as they came in, their guns were just pointing right there, and he pulled the trigger,” Mertilla Jones said of Weekley. “I seen the light leave out of her eyes and the blood started gushing out her mouth and she was dead.”
There is no argument that an unintentional shot from Weekley’s gun killed Aiyana after police tossed the stun grenade and burst into the home. Weekley has said his gun accidentally fired when Jones bumped into him or grabbed it. Prosecutors say he was negligent in failing to control his weapon.
Jones said there were only seconds between the police entering the house and the shot being fired. She said Aiyana’s head was propped against the armrest of the couch as she slept and that Weekley was holding the gun right next to the armrest when his weapon discharged.
“The gun went off and shot her in the head. I started screaming and hollering. … ‘Y’all done killed my grandbaby,'” Jones told the courtroom.
Jones said she didn’t interfere with or touch any of the officers, who were dressed entirely in black, including their masks and combat boots. Police were accompanied by a crew from the reality TV show, “The First 48.”
Last week, a neighbor testified that he tried to tell officers before they raided the home that children were inside. Under cross-examination Monday, Jones said the officers were negligent.
“They knew there were children in there. So why would they come in there like that? They came to kill, and they killed a 7-year-old.”
Larry Davis, the officer who tossed the stun grenade, said it is used during raids to create a diversion. Davis also testified the team was unaware children were inside.
When asked by prosecutors if knowing children were in the house would have forced police to change raid tactics, Davis responded: “Probably not.”
Weekley, who carried a shield and MP5 submachine gun, was the assigned point man — or first man into the house as the grenade went off.
Davis testified Weekley told him after the shooting that someone grabbed his weapon.
“I told him things would be OK. That’s about it,” Davis said.
The special response team and homicide investigators were searching for Chauncey Owens, who was a suspect in the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Je’rean Blake two days earlier outside a neighborhood convenience store.
Mertilla Jones testified that Owens lived in the upper unit with her daughter, LaKrystal Sanders. Police found Owens in the upstairs flat and he was arrested.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
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5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
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6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
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7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
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8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
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9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
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10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
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11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
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12. Late nights mornings
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13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
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14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
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15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
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16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
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17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
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18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
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19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
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20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
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21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
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22. Claudia Jordan: ....
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23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
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24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
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25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
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