Family reacts to 11-year-old shot and killed

Early Thursday morning, someone fired up to fifteen rifle rounds into a Saginaw home where a grandfather and two of his grandchildren were sleeping.

Both the 66-year-old grandfather James Owens and 11-year-old grandson Tamaris Steward were hit.

This is the second time in four days that a child has been shot in Saginaw.

Monday afternoon, four-year-old Miyona Alexander was shot while sitting in a car at the intersection of Sheridan and Webber. Alexander was shot in the right arm and has been released from the hospital.

Eleven-year-old Tamaris Steward was staying at his grandfather's house Wednesday night. Around 10:15p.m. he was seen dancing to Michael Jackson's music.

He, his sister, and grandfather later went to sleep.

Then, around 1:30p.m., someone walked up to the Whittier Street home, and pumped 10 to 15 rifle rounds inside.

A neighbor called police.

Minutes later, the grandfather called police saying his nephew had been shot in the chest, and that he had been shot in the shoulder.

Saginaw Police Detective Sergeant Joseph Dutoi says, "It seems so random. It's unexplainable, but I think as our investigators are able to dig in, we'll be ale to find out why this happened."

The victim's aunt, LaTasha Owens says the crime is senseless. "No reason at all," says Owens. "My dad doesn't do anything to anybody. Tamaris was 11-years-old. He didn't to anything to anybody."

The grandfather is out of the hospital but still in pain, along with the pain that remains from losing T.J.

"It's tragic. It's tragic for the community. It's tragic for the families. It's senseless violence. Sometimes you understand why things happen, but when children are getting shot, it makes no sense to anybody," says Dutoi.

Flags fly at half-staff at Carrollton Middle School where T.J. attended.

Schools officials describe him as positive, active, involved, and well-liked, killed the same day he finished sixth grade.

Carrollton Schools Superintendent Craig Douglas says, "People left here on a real, real positive note, absolutely anticipating the summer and to be robbed of that is indefensible."

The family hopes the public will come forward to catch the shooter.

"Everybody should come together, pray together, and I hope whoever did this turn themselves in because this is a shame. We'll forgive you because we love Jesus, and I know Jesus will forgive you, so we will too," says LaTasha Owens.

Police have talked to the family, wanting to find out of anyone had any reason for doing this.

At this point, investigators are wondering if it was a case of mistaken identity.