Murder of 6-year-old Angel Hooper demands justice

One moment, Angel Hooper was a joyful 6-year-old, buying bubble gum with her dad. With the blur of a passing car and the sound of gunfire, she became a homicide victim.

Even in a city that has become too complacent about gun violence, this child’s death is incomprehensible. Just as astounding are indications that people may be protecting her killer.

Angel was struck by a bullet about 7:15 p.m. Friday in the parking lot of the 7-11 at 10615 Blue Ridge Blvd. Friends, family and strangers vented their grief and outrage at vigils over the weekend.

But at midday Monday, Kansas City police issued a news release that spoke of frustration.

“Despite multiple people witnessing the incident, police have received just one tip about the murder of a 6-year-old girl Friday night,” it began. Later, police updated that number to two tips.

People, it is not enough to mourn this child. The community must take a stand, and the first step is making sure whoever was involved in her murder is locked up. Police will work day and night to find Angel’s killer, but they need help.

Witnesses may think they’re playing it safe by keeping silent. But anyone who fires at a convenience store parking lot, for whatever reason, is a menace to all. It is unconscionable that the killer is on the streets.

The daughter of Charity Guinn and Booker Hooper, Angel attended the first grade at Symington Elementary School, where she’d been accepted into the gifted program. She loved to read and sing and was a praise dancer at her church. She had much to give, and now all that has been lost to a reckless, selfish act of violence.

The death of this child calls out for justice. Anyone with information should call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).