5-year-old child killed in drive-by on Cleveland's east side

5-year-old child killed in drive-by on Cleveland's east side
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson is on the scene of that deadly drive-by shooting (Source: WOIO)
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson is on the scene of that deadly drive-by shooting (Source: WOIO)
A 5-year-old boy was killed in a drive-by shooting on Louise Harris Drive in Cleveland (Source: WOIO)
A 5-year-old boy was killed in a drive-by shooting on Louise Harris Drive in Cleveland (Source: WOIO)
Police have crime scene taped off on Louise Harris Drive (Source: WOIO)
Police have crime scene taped off on Louise Harris Drive (Source: WOIO)
Police search for clues on the scene (Source: WOIO)
Police search for clues on the scene (Source: WOIO)

Cleveland Police say a 5-year-old boy has died after being shot in the chest in a drive-by shooting in the 2300 block of Louise Harris Drive.

Family members are devastated by the loss of little Romone Burnett Jr., known as "Dink."

"This is a baby, a 5-year-old kid. You took his life. He don't even have a life now because you took it," said Darlene Burnett, Romone's aunt. "He was very lovable, playful. His mother won't see him graduate, his 13th birthday, nothing."

Neighbors are shaken to see an innocent child killed.

"We got to get away from being afraid, we got to talk. Because if we don't start talking it's never gonna stop," said Shelly, who did not want to give her last name.

"Every five minutes feels like something has happened. Somebody's losing their life. Senseless, over nothing," said Rev. Darnell Knox.

Mayor Frank Jackson and Police Chief Calvin Williams were at a loss for words.

"This is an innocent child who need not be caught up in whatever beef or disagreement people may have had," said Mayor Jackson.

"Here's another funeral we're going to have to get ready to do. And all we can do is pray," said Rev. Knox.

Chief Williams says two people are in custody in connection with the shooting. He says police are also searching for a dark blue or gray Pontiac G6 that may have been involved.

This is the second drive-by shooting that has victimized children this week in Cleveland.

The first happened Tuesday night on East 117th and St. Clair. Two teenagers, 13 and 15-years-old, were hit by bullets.

Both survived, but one is still in the hospital, his spleen gone and a bullet is lodged near his spine.

On East 117th, 12 bullet holes stretch the length of a wall where police say Everton Gillings, who's still on the run, opened fire on a group of kids.

Police have issued a warrant for 23-year-old Everton Gillings in that case.

Mayor Jackson lives a few blocks away from Friday's crime scene and says policing alone won't stop shootings. He says communities must come together.

"We have to own the life and we have to own the death of this 5-year-old," Jackson said.

13-year-old De'Avion Stewart lives just feet away from where Dink was gunned down.

"Even though I didn't know him that long it was still hard for me to think about what happened to him," Stewart said.

"Sometimes we have to make hard decisions. When our kids are doing bad things and showing bad behavior. You can't stick up for it," said Ward 5 Cleveland City Councilwoman Phyllis Cleveland.

De'Avion Stewart is living in a tough neighborhood, not knowing what could happen next and willing to share a dream with our Scott Taylor.

Stewart thinks that guns should not exist because "no guns" would mean that Dink would come over and play in the morning.

"I think the law should say that guns are not allowed to be sold or people are not allowed to have guns licenses. Guns shouldn't be made... period," Stewart said.

If anyone has any information that could help police in either drive-by shooting, you're asked to contact the Homicide Unit at (216) 623-5464.

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