Vigil held for 10-year-old girl who died in accidental shooting in Kingsessing

A vigil was held on Friday for a 10-year-old girl who police say died after she was accidentally shot with a found gun at a home in Kingsessing last month. 

Pink and purple balloons were released at James Finnegan playground in Southwest Philadelphia in honor of Shanyiah Gaines-Miles, who was shot and killed July 1 at a home on the 5500 block of Whitby Avenue.

Officers from the Philadelphia Police Department found Gaines-Miles responsive in the second-floor bedroom with a gunshot wound to the head, according to officials. Investigators say Gaines-Miles was killed when she got her hands on an unsecured firearm.

Chiesha Gaines, Shanyiah's mother, said her daughter was with her father at her grandmother’s house where he lived along with other family members when the fatal shooting happened.

The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office has since charged Shanyiah's uncle, Tyree Miles, with involuntary manslaughter and related offenses.

"When children are shot because an adult did not responsibly store and lock away a firearm, that adult needs to be held accountable," District Attorney Larry Krasner said. 

Shanyiah's shooting death came days after police said a 10-year-old boy fatally shot himself with a gun he found in an unlocked cabinet while home alone with his younger sister. 

"These tragedies are completely preventable," Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said. "It is the responsibility of adults to keep guns secure."

Chiesha Gaines said she will spread awareness of gun safety and gun violence in memory of her daughter.

Meanwhile, officials advise gun owners to take advantage of a city-run program that provides free gun locks, no questions asked



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