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Community celebrates Davon McNeal's birthday with motorcade

Davon McNeal was fatally shot in the head on his way to a cookout on the Fourth of July. He would have been 12 on Saturday.

WASHINGTON — Friends, family and community members gathered Saturday to celebrate what would have been Davon McNeal's 12th birthday with a motorcade and go-go music. 

Davon McNeal was shot and killed by a stray bullet while on his way to a community anti-violence cookout on the Fourth of July. The boy was hit after a group of five fired shots in his direction, according to D.C. police. 

RELATED: 'He was just getting a phone charger' | 11-year-old boy killed after being struck in head by bullet in SE DC

Since then, four men have been arrested in connection to the shooting.

Police do not believe Davon was the intended target of the shooting. 

RELATED: Police: Fourth suspect in connection to shooting death of 11-year-old Davon McNeal turns himself in

In court documents, detectives said it appeared to be a neighborhood beef between three rival crews. In charging documents, they tie the case to a previous shooting on June 29 and released chilling video of men shooting assault-style rifles wildly in the 1400 block of Cedar St. SE.

RELATED: All 4 men charged in 11-year-old Davon McNeal's murder have criminal histories

Davon was a 6th grader at Kramer Middle School he was described as a funny and outgoing child with dreams of playing in the NFL. His mother Crystal is a violence interrupter in the District.

On Saturday, the community remembered Davon, whose death sparked calls for change during a particularly violent year in D.C.

RELATED: 'It's a war zone' | DC's gun violence takes toll on locals' mental health

Almost 200 homicides happened in D.C. in 2020, according to the Metropolitan Police Department. The last time D.C. had a higher murder rate was 16 years ago.

According to Gun Violence Archive, a nonprofit that tracks American gun violence, more children under the age of 12 have been killed or injured by guns in the United States in 2020 than in the last seven years the organization has been tracking the shooting statistic.

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