CHICAGO - A car ride with new friends turned deadly for a Chicago teen when a suspect followed their vehicle and opened fire.
Detectives say the gunman was mad over words spoken moments before the shooting.
When Marissa Boyd got in that car she had no idea that moments before, one of her new friends had just made an off-color joke to the suspect.
She had no idea she was about to lose her life because they were already being followed.
When Nortasha Boyd talks about the daughter she lost, what she remembers most is her gentle and caring spirit.
"She had a saying if there was turmoil, arguing or fusing; she would say, ‘you’re all supposed to love each other and get along with each other,'” said Boyd.
However, her little peacemaker would suffer a violent death with people she barely knew, people who fueled the fire of an angry gunman.
Area central detective Keith Morris says that night seven years ago, three boys were in a car, one of them cracked a joke out the window to the suspect. The boys went on to pick up two girls at separate homes, one of them was 19-year-old Marissa.
Following right behind them was that gunman still fuming over those words.
"The group is in the center lane facing north at the light,” said Morris. “The gunman pulls up alongside them from the right and that's where he shoots at the car multiple times."
Marissa would die right there at the corner. Her body, riddled with bullets.
"Why would you allow words to make you react?” said Boyd. “To make you pick up a gun to shoot in a car with kids, teenagers. What if it was your child? How would you feel if somebody took your child’s life? I don’t know how you sleep with yourself. Because I know that, I can’t sleep sometimes. I know that I have trouble thinking about what happened. So I’m pretty sure that you’re having some type of remorse or something."
Police say Marissa was not involved in gangs and had no criminal history. However, getting others in the Park Manor neighborhood to step forward is the challenge.
"And to think that she got in a car with people she thought were her friends and they won’t talk,” said Boyd. “They won’t say anything.”
Andre Hart lives in the Park Manor area and says people have good reason to be afraid. However, he says they have even more reason to fight back together and turn in the man who did it.
"When I close my fingers you pack power, it's more powerful than when you have separation and that breeds despair,” said Hart.
There is a $15,000 reward for information about the killer in this case.
If you think you know who is behind the attack, give police a call or else message Anita Padilla at firstname.lastname@example.org.