A 16-year-old boy was shot twice and struck in the head and arm after mistakenly ringing the doorbell at the wrong house to pick up his younger twin brothers. The homeowner immediately fired upon the high school student when he opened the door.
Black teenager shot in the head after mistakenly ringing doorbell at wrong house to pick up his siblings
Ralph Yarl, a 16-year-old Black boy from the Kansas City area, meant to pick up his brothers from a friend’s house on 115th Terrace but accidentally rang a doorbell at a home on 115th Street. That’s according to Faith Spoonmore, the teen’s aunt, NBC reported.
The male homeowner who opened the door saw Yarl and immediately shot him in the head. Yarl fell to the ground, and the man shot him again, striking him in the arm. Yarl got up and ran from the property, going to three different homes and asking for help before someone assisted him, Spoonmore said.
Police were dispatched to the neighborhood around 10 PM, where they found the teen suffering life-threatening injuries. Emergency services transported the minor to a hospital, where he is now recovering, said Kansas City Police (KCPD) Chief Stacey Graves at a press conference, Fox 4 reported.
Community marches in call for justice
On Sunday, hundreds of community members marched in Kansas City in a call for accountability, demanding that prosecutors charge the homeowner.
“We want the community to know that we are committed to justice in this case and every case, and work every day to seek that justice for all victims of the crime,” Kansas City Police Chief Stacy Graves said during a news conference.
Chief Graves was asked whether the shooting may have been racially motivated.
“The information that we have now, it does not say that that is racially motivated,” Graves said. “That’s still an active investigation. But as a chief of police, I do recognize the racial components of this case.”
The homeowner N.E. 115th Street was taken into custody on a 24-hour investigative hold by police, who also recovered the weapon used in the shooting. The alleged shooter has been released.
Under Missouri law, a person can be held for up to 24 hours for investigation of a felony, at which time they are required to be charged or released, Graves said.
The Chief added that once KCPD has closed its investigation, it will forward the case to the Clay County prosecutor’s office to determine charges, if any, People reported.
Attorneys for the wounded teen’s family issued a statement demanding “swift action from Clay County prosecutors and law enforcement to identify, arrest and prosecute to the full extent of the law the man responsible for this horrendous and unjustifiable shooting,” CNN reported.