Vigil for teen killed in police shooting



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William Hudson believes the arrival of an eagle soaring over the intersection where his daughter died last week was no coincidence.

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William Hudson believes the arrival of an eagle soaring over the intersection where his daughter died last week was no coincidence.

“We were just talking about it, that it was Eishia watching over us, making sure everyone was OK,” he said Sunday evening. “It definitely touched our hearts seeing the eagle. It was very special, that’s for sure.”

Sixteen-year-old Eishia Hudson was shot to death by city police Wednesday night at the intersection of Lagimodiere Boulevard and Fermor Avenue. She was driving a stolen SUV with several youths in the vehicle, officers pursued and shots were fired.

JOHN WOODS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Family and friends comfort Christie Zebrasky (centre).

On Sunday night, family and friends held a vigil in her memory, a ceremony that included drumming and singing, the burning of sweet grass and a large circle walk. The intersection was shut down for more than two hours as participants — as many as 75 people — came to support William Hudson and Christie Zebrasky, Eishia’s mother.

“Fly high my baby… May you rest in peace baby,” Zebrasky had posted to her Facebook page the morning after losing her daughter.

Speaking from the vigil, Hudson said he was overwhelmed by the turnout.

“Christie and I are very grateful for everyone showing up and showing their support for Eishia. We couldn’t ask for any more. Wow, the turnout is amazing,” he said.

Police allege the group robbed a liquor store in Sage Creek not long before the deadly confrontation with officers. Speaking Thursday, Winnipeg Police Service Chief Danny Smyth said the SUV rammed into a police car and hit other vehicles during suspects’ attempts to flee.

Smyth said an officer fired, striking the teen driver. She was rushed to Health Sciences Centre but didn’t survive. The Independent Investigative Unit of Manitoba (IIU) is investigating the officer-involved shooting, Smyth said.

The girl’s parents maintain the use of lethal force wasn’t necessary.

“We’ll go day by day and do the best we can to get justice for our daughter. That’s what’s going to be on my mind after I lay my daughter to rest,” said Hudson. A funeral service is planned for Monday.

Zebrasky said her daughter should be remembered for the kind-hearted teen she was, not the tragic way her life ended.

“Eishia was very outgoing, loving, caring, put everybody above her. She was as strong, independent girl. She was a great aunt, sister, daughter, granddaughter,” she said. “She was loved. She had impact on a lot of these people.

“And I want it to be known that Winnipeg police did wrong to my daughter.”

Four teens were charged with several offences in connection to the thefts and stolen vehicle.

Early Thursday morning, another Winnipegger was shot to death by police after officers responded to a domestic violence call in the 300 block of Anderson Avenue.

The IIU is investigating the death of Jason Collins, 36.

Twitter: @WFPJasonBell

Jason Bell

Jason Bell
Sports editor

Jason Bell wanted to be a lawyer when he was a kid. The movie The Paper Chase got him hooked on the idea of law school and, possibly, falling in love with someone exactly like Lindsay Wagner (before she went all bionic).

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