14-year-old’s mother speaks out for first time since daughter’s shooting death

West Virginia

Editor’s Note: Since this story’s publication, WOWK 13 News has been in contact with the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office, and we have been given new and corrected information about this incident. The story below has been edited to reflect the information that the Sheriff’s Office has given us.

Statement from Sgt. Brian Humphries with the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office:

The shooting did not occur at or near a residence.

The video shared to Snapchat was not created immediately prior to her being shot but was instead created the night before. The sounds in the video are believed to be firecrackers being set off outside the residence, not gunshots.

Though several juveniles were detained in the hours after the shooting probable cause to arrest anyone for lesser crimes was not developed before their releases, and prosecutors were consulted throughout the process so the decision was legally sound.

The incident is still being investigated as a homicide.  

Sgt. Brian Humphries, Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office

KANAWHA COUNTY, WV (WOWK) – In an exclusive interview, WOWK 13 News Reporter Moriah Davis sat down with a mother who tragically lost her daughter in a shooting this past weekend.

We want to warn you, this story could be difficult to watch or read for some viewers.

Sierra Miller describes her daughter as very friendly and loving, but the loss still hasn’t completely set in. 14-year-old Da’nija L. Miller, of Charleston, was killed in a shooting Sunday, Aug. 15.

“She loved going to school, she loved music. She loved playing with her sister and her brother. She loved her dad,” Miller said.

Friday, Miller filed a missing person’s report after Da’nija didn’t get off the bus after school. She speculated about why anyone would want to do this to her daughter:

“She was having problems with some kids and one of the kids had already said they were going to kill her, and that was about two weeks ago,” Sierra Miller said.

At the time of the shooting, police detained three minors, but later let them go. The shooting is being investigated as a homicide, and Sierra Miller says she feels like nobody cares.

“They could have figured out what happened totally before they released the kids,” Miller said. “I feel like they could have made an arrest saying that he admitted to doing something, even if wasn’t an arrest for killing her. It could have been an arrest for having a gun.”

Miller says she advises parents to check their kids’ social media and talk to them often to see what they’re involved in, however, “you cannot monitor your kids 24/7,” Miler says. “You just got to trust that they’re doing the right thing.”

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