SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Family and friends gathered at Hagginwood Park to celebrate the young life of Makaylah “Kay Kay” Brent Thursday after laying the 9-year-old to rest.
Brent was killed while playing tag in Mama Marks Park earlier this month in a shooting that injured three others, including another child.
Brent’s mother, Candace Fleming, spoke to CBS13 for the first time Thursday.
“Kay Kay I miss you so much, baby. Mommy loves you so much. I’m still hurt. I’m very, very, very hurt,” Fleming said.
Fleming says not even knowing that the man who police say pulled the trigger is behind bars can make her feel better after the death of her daughter.
“Jail is not going to teach him anything. I just want him to know he hurt me,” Fleming said.
The person accused of shooting and killing Brent, Laise Hands, has been arrested and is being held at the Sacramento County Jail.
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Despite the somber day, Makaylah’s community chose to celebrate her life.
“She’s looking down on us. All these people out here Kay Kay came for you and love you. You brought this community together,” Brent’s aunt Joanne Fleming said.
Since the shooting, the community has promised to protect their local parks, places they say are supposed to belong to the children.
“It’s hard to say goodbye. We know that she’s in a better place. That’s the hardest part for us is saying goodbye. The community has come out to show great support and we do appreciate it as a family,” Amber Leslie, Brent’s grandma, said.
Brent was known for being a happy kid with tons of friends and that was clear Thursday as family, teachers, and police officers gathered, vowing to take back Sacramento parks and make sure nothing like this ever happens again.
“We have challenges in our community and it’s seeing something like this that they’re honoring Makaylah coming out and supporting. It feels really really good because we’ve been through some rough times,” Brent’s cousin Debra Cummings said.
The Sacramento City Council plans to add security measures to parks in the Del Paso Heights area including better lighting and surveillance cameras.