Family seeks justice for teen shot in head while trying to pick up siblings at wrong address

Published: Apr. 16, 2023 at 6:41 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 17, 2023 at 9:30 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - Protestors gathered to speak out for justice after a teenage boy was shot twice while attempting to pick up his younger siblings at the wrong residential address.

Ralph Yarl, 16, is currently in the hospital, recovering from severe gunshot injuries in the head after a man allegedly shot him twice. The family has started a GoFundMe account to help with medical costs and fees.

According to his aunt, Faith Spoonmore, around 10 p.m., Thursday evening, Yarl was heading to pick up his siblings and arrived at the wrong address.

The Kansas City police department stated the incident took place in the 1100 block of NE 115th Street just after 9:50 p.m. on April 13.

The correct address Yarl was attempting to go to was a block away. According to Spoonmore, the homeowner opened his door and then opened fire on Yarl.

The man, whose identity has not been released yet, allegedly took a second shot at Yarl, hitting him in the head again.

Yarl was able to get up and run to get help. He attempted to ask for help from three neighboring residential homes until someone was able to get help for him.

ALSO READ: Hundreds gather in the Northland to support teen shot on Thursday night

KCPD Chief Stacy Graves held a press conference Sunday afternoon along with Mayor Quinton Lucas, stating that detectives are committed to making a thorough investigation of the case.

“As a parent, I certainly feel for the mother of the victim and others in the family. My heart goes out to them,” Mayor Lucas said at the press conference.

On Spoonmore’s Instagram page, she has posted many of Yarl’s accomplishments and fond photos of him, with the text stating “tell his story so they won’t change his character”.

Yarl is a section leader in his school’s marching band and is said to be a top-base clarinet player in the state of Missouri. Spoonmore listed several activities that Yarl is a part of, including being a member of the Technology Student Association, Science Olympia team and Competition Jazz Band. Yarl recently earned the Missouri All-State Band recognition with an honorable mention.

The homeowner suspected of the shooting was brought to a police station to make a statement and was released shortly thereafter.

At today’s press conference, Lucas acknowledged the racial aspects of this case.

ALSO READ: Celebrities, activists join national outcry of support, justice for teen Ralph Yarl

“This is not something that has been dismissed, marginalized, diminished in any way. This is something that is getting the full attention of the Kansas City Police Department.”

Lee Merritt, a nationally recognized civil rights activist lawyer, widely known for representing the family of Ahmaud Arbery has taken the case. Another well-known journalist and activist assisting with the case is Shaun King, who has shared this story on his social media platform.