WASHINGTON - Family and friends gathered to remember a District teenager who was shot and killed after being was caught in the crossfire of a shootout while driving in Northeast D.C. last week.
A candlelight vigil for 17-year-old Jamahri Sydnor was held Thursday night just days before she was set to begin college at Florida A&M University. Her mother, who is a D.C. police sergeant, said they visited the university two weeks ago for orientation.
One week after the shooting, Sydnor’s relatives, friends and the D.C. police family came together to remember the teenager at the scene where she was shot. There were a lot of tears shed from both children and adults in the crowd. The 17-year-old’s mother spoke to the media while her father made an emotional plea to find her killers.
“Jamahri was a good girl,” said Q Wallace, Jamahri’s mother. “She was perfect. She was perfect, and I know in the real big scheme of things, that she had her flaws because we all do, but she was perfect for us. She was perfect for her family … The day that this tragedy stepped into us, the way that somebody just shot at my baby’s head and snatched the breath out of her. She was on her way taking my grandson, her nephew – he was getting prepared for daughter’s wedding the next day.”
The Upper Darby Police Department, which is located in a suburb of Philadelphia, was present at the vigil as one of their officer's received Sydnor's liver after she died.
Sydnor was gunned down last week as she was driving her car in the 1400 block of Saratoga Avenue. Another man was also wounded during the shooting.
Over the weekend, the girl’s family made the decision to remove her from life support.
Police said the teenager was not the intended target of the gunfire. According to the police report, two men were hiding in the bushes on the side of the road before opening fire at a group of people across the street.
D.C. police arrested 21-year-old Philip McDaniel the following day and charged with assault with intent to kill by gun. Police Chief Peter Newsham said they are still looking for additional suspects believed to be connected with the shooting.
Sydnor graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School earlier this year.
"She was a member of our choir and a cheerleader. She has had a tremendously positive impact on all who know her," said Wilson principal Kimberly Martin.