Detroit police: 5-year-old girl killed in 'execution-style shooting,' mother shot 17 times

46-year-old man with high-powered weapon fatally shot by officers, police say

DETROIT – Detroit police said a tragic chain of events began with the murder of a 5-year-old girl and shooting of her mother before ending with a deadly officer-involved shooting.

The mother and her child were shot Thursday night at a home on Lyndon Street in Detroit, police said. A short time later, police executing a search warrant connected to the case used deadly force, killing someone inside a house on Evergreen Road. 

Family and friends were devastated by what police described as an "execution-style shooting" of 5-year-old Isabella Coleman.

Isabella Coleman (WDIV)

"All I know is that Izzy's gone," family friend Alicia Walters said. "She should be going to kindergarten now."

Officials said a masked gunman stood over the girl around 10 p.m. Thursday while she was in bed with her mother at the Lyndon Avenue home. 

Her mother, Dejiza Coleman, was shot 17 times, according to authorities.

Dejiza Coleman (WDIV)

The gunman then shot Isabella, killing her, according to Detroit police Chief James Craig. 

" (Police) placed the 5-year-old in the rear seat of the police car," Craig said. "The officer got in the back and held her. The way it was described to me, she still had somewhat of a pulse."    

Police said the motive behind the shooting was a well-known sibling rivalry between Coleman and her sister. 

"(They had a) sister rivalry, but they still lived in the same house so they still had to get along," Walters said. 

"We know that it was an ongoing family dispute among sisters," Craig said.

Detroit police arrested Coleman's sister at another family home two miles away on Evergreen Road. But as officers went into the house, they said they encountered Detric Driver, 46, armed with a high-powered weapon. 

Detric Driver (WDIV)

Driver, a father of two, is the step-uncle to Coleman and her sister, police said. He was fatally shot by officers.  

"Here's the thing: If they were looking for (expletive), all they had to do was knock on my door," Driver's brother, Daryl Driver, said.  "I would have gladly opened it up and let them in. You killed my brother for nothing."   

"This is not a wrong person," Craig said. "He was armed with a high-powered weapon."

Family members said it's unfair that Isabella will never get to grow up because of the actions of adults.

"For Izzy to be gone, and for us to have to bury Izzy -- it's unbelievable," Walters said. 

 Dejiza Coleman is in critical condition, according to health officials.

The officer involved in the shooting is on restricted duty, police said. Officials are reviewing body camera footage from the first search warrant.

Police are continuing to search for suspects.

About the Authors:

Local 4 Defender Shawn Ley is an Emmy award-winning journalist who has been with Local 4 News for more than a decade.

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.