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Mom of slain girl thanks families after men turn themselves in to police

Posted at 9:33 PM, Dec 21, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-22 15:07:24-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham vented his frustration Monday evening at a community following the murder of Amiya Moses. The 12-year-old girl was shot and killed Saturday while visiting friends at an apartment complex on Old Brook Road.

"I’m fed up, and I’m tired of this," Chief Durham said.

"We tried to tell her, Amiya, you are hanging around the wrong people," Chanya Newsome, one of Amiya’s friends, said.

Durham and community

Community rally for Amiya Moses

Police and community leaders said an on-going neighborhood dispute led to Saturday night's gunfire.

"It just festered, and festered, and it manifested itself resulting in gunfire and the killing of an innocent person," an area faith leader said.

Dwight Jackson and Shaquille Maxwell, both 20-years-old, were arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit murder. Chief Durham said the suspects' friends and family convinced the men to turn themselves in. Amiya’s mom, Kele Wright, said she was grateful the arrests were made.

"I want to say thank you to the family first of all and foremost that comes from the bottom of my heart," she said.

Amiya Moses (SOURCE: Family photo)

Amiya Moses (SOURCE: Family photo)

Jackson and Maxwell’s families did not want to talk on camera, but Maxwell’s brother told CBS 6 reporter Melissa Hipolit over the phone that they told the pair to go in and share their side of the story.

Amyia“I encourage you to call your police…that’s why we’re here, we can’t do it alone,” Durham said.

Neighbors said there had been an argument in the area that had nothing to do with Amiya and that she was never the intended target. While waiting to go live from the scene at 5, CBS 6 reporter Laura French witnessed a group of young people fighting. It’s unclear if the fight is part of the ongoing neighborhood dispute.

‘All because somebody wanted to be a fool, they took my daughter’s life,’ Amiya’s mother said

"All because somebody wanted to be a fool, they took my daughter's life," Moses's mother Kele Wright said one day after the shooting. "This crime has to stop, it has to."

Wright will hold onto memories of her only child who loved to dance and smile, while she fights to make the streets of Richmond safer with the community behind her.

"I want her legacy to be that violence is not the key," she said. "The community needs to stand up and stop the violence, stop everything, you see something don’t be scared to go say something. Violence leads to people burying thier loved ones when it’s not their time,” she added.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Wright and her family with funeral expenses for Amiya.