3 arrested in fatal shooting of 12-year-old California girl

August 11, 2017

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — Three people were arrested in connection with the shooting death of a 12-year-old Southern California girl after a feud between one of the suspects and the girl’s family, sheriff’s officials said Friday.

The three suspects — Anthony Pitts, Danielle Cummings and Reyna Mercado — were arrested after Wednesday night’s shooting in Victorville, San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon said.

Makiya Walls was inside her home when shots smashed through the front window and struck her. The girl was not the intended target of the shooting, but there was an ongoing dispute between Pitts and the girl’s family, McMahon said.

“This argument had been going on for several months,” said sheriff’s Sgt. John Gaffney. “Earlier in the day, there was a confrontation between members of both families ... that did lead to the shooting that night.”

Pitts is a self-admitted gang member and knew Makiya’s mother, investigators said, though they declined to detail their exact relationship.

The suspects had an ongoing dispute with Makiya’s mother, Maesha McCullers, who had made threats against the suspects, McMahon said.

McCullers was arrested Thursday night on suspicion of making criminal threats, McMahon said.

Speaking to reporters Thursday, McCullers wept as she described her daughter, calling her smart, witty, respectful, caring, and “the most innocent child with the biggest heart.”


This story has been corrected to show one of the suspects is named Danielle Cummings, not Danielle Campbell.