CLEVELAND URBAN NEWS.COM-CLEVELAND, Ohio-Family members, friends, community activists and even strangers came out Saturday afternoon for memorial services for murdered 14-year-old Clevelander Alianna DeFreeze (pictured).
"There were quite a few community activists there and the services were excellent," said Ada Averyhart, 83, a community activist from the Cleveland based grassroots groups the Carl Stokes Brigade and the Imperial Women Coalition. "The singing was excellent."
Activist Art McKoy of Black on Black Crime Inc was in attendance ans said that the killer does not deserve a trial in spite of a constitutional guarantee for such if chosen.
"Whoever did this should get the death penalty straight out with no trial."
The Black girl, whose body was discovered by police two weeks ago in a vacant home at the the 9400 block of Fullmer Avenue on Cleveland's majority Black east side, was last seen Jan 26 at the 3400 block of East 149th Street when she was getting off the RTA bus headed to school.
Hundreds turned out Saturday to say farewell to the teen.
Cleveland Ward 2 Councilman Zack Reed was the only elected official there, and rightfully so since the abandoned home where Alianna's body was found sits in his ward.
Cleveland Heights is a neighboring middle-class suburb of Cleveland and is roughly 45 percent Black.
Police escorted Alianna’s body from Lucas Funeral Home in Garfield Heights to Imani Temple Ministries in Cleveland Heights for the memorial.
Christopher Whitaker of South Euclid, Ohio, a convicted sex offender who served time in prison for sexual battery, among other convictions, has been charged with aggravated murder in Alianna's death, among other crimes, and is being held on a $3 million bond.
He has pleaded not guilty to the gruesome crime.
Police say that DNA links Whitaker to the crime, but cannot put him with the girl at any point to date, other than allegedly through DNA evidence.
Her family says she did not know him.
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