Tyler Perry to pay funeral expenses for girl shot in Atlanta

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Tyler Perry

FILE – In this Jan. 13, 2020, file photo, writer-director-actor Tyler Perry attends the premiere of “A Fall from Grace” at Metrograph in New York. Perry wrote “we must never give up” in a heartfelt first-person essay in People magazine detailing his thoughts on racial injustice and police brutality against unarmed black people in America. Perry said he almost passed on publishing his essay in the upcoming issue, which will be released Friday, but the filmmaker felt compelled to follow through because he’s “exhausted” from what he’s recently seen across the country. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

ATLANTA (AP) — Tyler Perry has offered to pay the funeral expenses for an 8-year-old girl who was fatally shot in Atlanta over the weekend, a representative for the actor and filmmaker confirmed Wednesday.

“I’m outraged today because I’d rather be paying for 8-year-old Secoriea Turner’s college than her funeral,” Perry said in a statement to People magazine. “When does this end?”

Secoriea was riding in a Jeep Cherokee with her mother and another adult on Saturday night when they encountered “a makeshift roadblock that was manned by numerous armed individuals,” Atlanta police Lt. Pete Malecki said. When the driver tried to go around the roadblock, shots were fired and the girl was hit, Malecki told reporters at a news conference Tuesday.

Police released a short video Tuesday of an armed man who they described as a person of interest in the girl’s shooting. Malecki said the video comes from a surveillance camera near where Secoriea was shot. It shows a Black man in a white shirt and dark pants carrying an AR-15 rifle with a tan stock and grip.

A reward of up to $20,000 has been offered for information leading to the arrest and indictment of a suspect in the case.

The girl was shot near the Wendy’s restaurant where a Black man, Rayshard Brooks, was killed by a white police officer June 12. The fast food outlet was later burned, and the area has since become a site for frequent demonstrations against police brutality. Perry also paid for Brooks’ funeral last month.


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