BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The cousin who 15-year-old Miracle McNeal called "grandmom" can't understand why someone would shoot up her home.
"Miracle didn't hurt nobody. I don't know why they shot up my house. I treat everybody how I would wish to be treated," Bobbie Towns told reporters during a tearful interview outside her 12th Street SW home.
The first shots were fired around 11:45 Tuesday night. Towns was asleep. So were three children under the age of 9. Towns' 32-year-old grandson had just arrived home from work and McNeal was in her bedroom.
Towns said McNeal was trying to seek safety when she was shot and fell on the floor.
"A child in her bed minding her business and, all of a sudden, now, she don't have a life. She can't continue her life. She don't have another day to fight. I'm very angry about it I'm not pleased with it," a neighbor said at a news conference.
McNeal and her aunt, who has raised her since her mother died a few years ago, recently moved in, Towns said.
The 15-year-old was a student at Midfield High School where grief counselors arrived Wednesday morning to meet individually with students and teachers coping with the news.
"She was a sweet person. She would make friends," Towns said of McNeal.
She said she will most remember how McNeal loved to play with the younger children in the neighborhood, was a homebody and one day wanted to be a lawyer.
"The key to this case is to determine why did they target this house," Birmingham Police Lt. Sean Edwards said.
Police said dozens of rounds were fired into the back of the house where McNeal's bedroom was located. Several shots hit her cousin's pickup truck parked on the street outside.
Lt. Edwards called the shooting "reckless" and said something happened that built up a "lot of anger" directed at the house. He said investigators have not determined whether one or more people were involved.
"The blood of a 15-year-old girl is now on their hands," Edwards said.
He urged anyone with information to call the police.
Birmingham City Councilwoman Sheila Tyson, whose district includes Towns home, agreed.
"It's time to tell," Tyson said.
Tyson joined other leaders and residents outside the home Wednesday evening "begging" someone to come forward with information.