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3 children who witnessed shooting will be forever impacted by trauma

Posted at 9:49 PM, Feb 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-28 23:33:26-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As Kansas City, Missouri, police investigated the circumstance that led to a fatal shooting Friday outside of its Central Patrol Division, officers also worked to comfort three young children who witnessed it all.

"Children should never have to experience such horrific and traumatic events," Branden Mims said.

As part of the Adhoc Group Against Crime, Mims works with teenagers and young children who have been impacted by crime.

He said children who witness shooting often experience difficulty sleeping, eating and processing what has happened.

"They relive those images in their minds day in and day out," he said. "It is absolutely life-altering. (They) will never forget, get over or get past seeing something like this today."

A police spokesperson said a 34-year-old man was shot with three children ages 3 to 7 in the vehicle just before 4 p.m. on Friday outside a KCPD police station at 1200 Linwood Blvd.

The man ran from the SUV, leaving the children behind as he raced through the police station's parking lot toward the front entrance, where he collapsed.

As officers from inside the Central Patrol Division responded to the sound of shots outside and rendered aid, others responded to the SUV after hearing the screams of the three crying children inside.

Mims said one of the most difficult ideas to convey to young crime victims or witnesses is that such violence is not normal.

"The trouble that we find is that it has become normalized, and so we like to say this is not normal," Mims said. "The idea it is not normal when it happens every single day is almost a foreign concept, but it should not be normal and it is not normal."

Police said Friday that a person of interest was in custody and no other suspects were being sought at this time, but details of what led up to the shooting have not been released.

State of Missouri resource list
Healing Pathway Victim Service Agency
AdHoc Group Against Crime