Man Charged in Fatal Shooting of 7-Year-Old Girl in Detroit Area

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PONTIAC, Mich.—A 19-year-old man is facing murder charges in a drive-by shooting that killed a 7-year-old girl outside her Detroit-area home, authorities said Friday.

Justin Rouser was arraigned Friday on first-degree murder, assault with intent to commit murder, and other charges, according to the Oakland County sheriff’s office. He was ordered held without bond in the county jail.

The Associated Press was unable Friday afternoon to determine if Rouser has an attorney.

On March 18, Ariah Jackson was in the rear seat of a car stopped in the driveway of her Pontiac home when shots were fired at the car from an SUV, authorities said.

The girl’s mother, 30, and three other children also were in the car. Ariah was struck once in the back of her head. Her mother’s head was grazed by a bullet. Ariah’s sister and two cousins were not wounded.

Ariah was rushed to a hospital, where she later was pronounced dead.

Her mother told deputies that she was waiting at a school bus stop for her two children and two nieces when she noticed an orange SUV with two males inside drive by. Once the children were off the bus, she drove home. That’s when a male passenger in the SUV fired shots at the car.

The sheriff’s office has said the shooting was gang-related and there is no known connection between Rouser and the victim or her family.

Rouser was arrested Wednesday during a traffic stop after leaving a home in nearby Troy where authorities believed he was hiding, the sheriff’s office said.

Police were continuing to seek the SUV’s driver who has been identified as a 17-year-old Pontiac resident.

Pontiac is about 30 miles (48 kilometers) northwest of Detroit.



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