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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Shooter Sentenced to 45 Years for 9-Year-Old Black Girl Killed by Stray Bullet

Brandoniya Bennett

Nationwide — Brandoniya Bennett, a 9-year-old African American girl from Dallas, Texas, was shot and killed inside her home in 2019. The shooter, Davonte Benton, has been convicted of murder and sentenced to 45 years imprisonment in connection with the little girl’s death.

“The murder of this child remains a senseless and unimaginable tragedy,” District Attorney John Creuzot said in a statement, according to People. “While nothing can bring Brandoniya back, I am thankful we are able to send the message that this kind of violence will not be tolerated in Dallas County.”

The incident happened on August 14, 2019, just a day before Brandoniya’s first day of school as a 4th grader. However, she was killed by a stray bullet from outside while walking back to the couch after grabbing a snack in the kitchen.

Benton was reportedly at the apartment complex in the Roseland Townhomes in Old East Dallas with 19-year-old amateur rapper Tyrese Simmons, who apparently felt insulted by a rival’s rap lyrics about him resulting in a social media feud.

“It got to the point where this group wanted to come over and solve it by fighting,” Dallas Police Department Maj. Danny Williams said.

Benton “was part of a group involved in a fight next door” on the day of the fatal shooting, Creuzot said. “The fight broke up but he and another man ran around to the back and fired several gunshots into the wrong unit. One of those bullets struck Brandoniya in the head, killing her almost instantly.”

The little girl was taken to the Baylor University Medical Center where she was pronounced dead.

Benton was arrested on September 5, 2019, and was charged with capital murder. He pleaded not guilty but has been recently sentenced to nearly five decades in prison after being convicted of the murder.

Simmons turned himself in on the day after the shooting and was charged with capital murder. He also pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial.

Meanwhile, Brandoniya’s family is still grieving the loss of their loved one.

Her grandmother Tonya Elder said she heard the shots on the day of the shooting and ran to the apartment. She said, “I looked down at the floor where my daughter sat holding her baby girl, her only baby girl, in a puddle of blood, because they stole her life.”

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