Community mourns loss of 5-year-old girl killed in hit-skip

Apolina Asumani was struck then dragged by a speeding driver
Published: Apr. 25, 2022 at 10:03 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - One day after the tragedy on W. 50th street in Cleveland, neighbors took matters into their own hands, putting up a “slow-down” sign as a somber reminder.

5-year-old Apolina Asumani was killed Saturday evening after a driver hit her.

Police say the little girl ran out from between two parked cars when a dark-colored sedan hit her, dragged her and then took off.

The passenger in the car returned to talk to police and they arrested the driver, a 17-year-old girl who’s been charged with the child’s death.

Apolina’s family members tell 19 News, they are distraught. They moved here to Cleveland from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and say this is devastating. Apolina’s uncle spoke to 19 News in Swahili, with an interpreter.

“She was just like a child, normal child like everyone else. She loved drawing. She spent a lot of time at daycare but when she came home she played like a normal child, jumping around,” said Mulumba Barabara Adluri.

Friends and neighbors are raising funds to lay Apolina to rest, doing their best to not forget her light.

The Refugee Response has started a fundraiser for the family. Click here if you’d like to contribute.

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