Family of Sterling Heights teen killed in 2016 drive-by still wait for justice

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A 15-year-old with a bright future killed in front of her grandmother's house during a family gathering.
More than a year-and-a-half later Jada Rankin's killer has never been caught, but her loved ones are not giving up the fight.

Back in 2016 Rankin was leaving her grandmother's house in Detroit after celebrating her grandmother's birthday. 

"It is the worst thing to ever happen to a parent," said Tawana Rankin, her mother. "I was at home when I got the phone call that she had been shot. It was only until I ran to the hospital did they tell me that she didn't make it."

It was tragic, unexpected and devastating. 

"I am just trying, I don't know what to do," Tawana said. "I just know I have to keep her story (out there)."

A speeding car drove down the street and her brother asked the driver to slow down. The driver opened his car door - and shot into the crowd.

One of the bullets found Jada. The 15-year-old was rushed to the hospital, but it was too late. 

"I am hoping I can look into your eyes and tell you that I forgive you for murdering my daughter," Tawana said. "But you have to pay the consequences for what you did."

Jada' s mom is using a Thursday night fundraiser at Sweet Magnolias in Southfield to fight the good fight against gun violence.

"I understand you can't move and I understand that you hurt and that the pain is unbearable," she said. "But as a mother who lost a child to gun violence I want you to be able to look at me and say it can happen. We can get through this."

Justice for Jada funds are expected to go towards Jada's old school Sterling Heights high, for seniors who want to walk across the stage so they can attend college. Tawana never got to see her daughter do that and she wants to give others that opportunity.

If you have information in the case, you can remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.