A 9-year-old girl, callously gunned down in her own home, is being laid to rest today.
Brandoniya Bennett’s funeral service is being held in Dallas.
The little girl was shot and killed after a cops say a teenage rapper recklessly opened fire at an apartment complex in Old East Dallas. Tyrese Simmons, 19, whose rapper name is “Lul Reese” was targeting another boy who wrote a “diss track” against him.
At least one bullet went through the wall of the wrong apartment and hit Brandoniya as she sat on the sofa.
The little girl, who would have been a 4th grader this month.
She was a popular cheerleader and members of her elementary school football team were seen at a funeral home.
Football coach Leland Lloyd said, ”She was one of the young ladies I took home… and that young lady she had a lot of energy. She could really dance. She’s like light to the room.”
Brandoniya was excited about school starting again.
Her mother treated her to manicure and the happy nine-year-old sat in her Old East Dallas home. But tragically a vengeful wannabe rapper opened fire at her wrong apartment.
Tyrese Simmons, 19, whose rapper name is “Lul Reese” turned himself in to cops hours after being named late Thursday for the shooting death of Brandoniya.
The police are yet to reveal Simmons intended target, but say the pair are both gang members.
Simmons had written hateful messages on social media and in song lyrics.
“Both parties recorded rap songs and they dissed each other. That was the impetus that resulted in a homicide of a nine-year-old girl,” Dallas Police Major Danny Williams said.
Witnesses say they broke up a fight between the two men shortly before the shooting.
The man lived next in the apartment next door to little Brandoniya.
Simmons allegedly threatened to come back and “air out this place,” Williams said.
“That’s a common term saying that you’re going to shoot into an apartment complex,” the police major added.
According to KDFW, witnesses heard at least five gunshots.
Officers tried in vain to save Brandoniya’s life.They carried the girl to a squad car so they could try to get her medical attention as fast as possible.
But sadly she was pronounced dead at the hospital.
“She was sitting in her house. She felt safe. She was nine years old. She would’ve started school today,” Williams said at a press conference.
“Those are the people that don’t think about safety because – as adults, as parents, as police officers – we’re supposed to make them safe. As community leaders, we’re supposed to make them safe.”
Simmons, who has been charged with capital murder, is being held in the Dallas County Jail on a $500,000 bond.
A GoFundMe campaign set up to raise money for Brandoniya’s mother, Sontravia Elder, to help with funeral expenses.
Generous donors have raised more than $30,000.