Family of fatally shot girl to hold candlelight vigil

They dispute police claims that 16-year-old was troubled

October 11, 2012|By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun

Family members of Ahjee Harrod, the 16-year-old girl who was fatally shot in the head in Northwest Baltimore on Sunday night, plan to hold a candlelight vigil Friday night — in part to dispute claims they were estranged from her.

Harrod was loved by many — more than 13,000 people have liked the "RIP Ahjee Harrod" page on Facebook — and close to her family, and the vigil will allow everyone to come together to mourn, the family said.

The family is frustrated with the way police have handled the case and portrayed Harrod as a troubled girl who'd had multiple run-ins with law enforcement, they said.

"This will not be swept under the rug," said Tracey Tyler, Harrod's cousin who gathered with about a dozen other family members Thursday night, passing around pictures of Harrod and recalling her quirks.

Harrod, just 4 feet 10 inches tall, loved macaroni and cheese and birthday cakes, and would request the latter at all times of the year, family members said. She was the family's "little fireball," a girl who everyone knew and who was always "bubbly," they said. She wanted to be an actress.

Police described Harrod as troubled in the days following her death, and said she had not been living at home since March.

Tyler said Harrod had been living with her until last month, and other family members said she often stopped in or called. She was not missing or estranged from them, they said.

"She was just trying to find herself and make it back home," Tyler said.

The family said Harrod had been in some fights in recent years, but the worst thing on her record was skipping school.

No one in the family knows what occurred Sunday night, when Harrod was found about 10 p.m. in the 6300 block of Fairlawn Avenue, they said.

The vigil will be held about 7 p.m. at the intersection of E. Eager and N. Bond streets, near where another family member lives.

A funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Southern Baptist Church, 1701 North Chester Street.

krector@baltsun.com

twitter.com/rectorsun

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