Beneath a multi-colored quilt of Disney cartoon characters, 7-year-old Aiyana Stanley-Jones lay peacefully on the living room couch of her grandmother's first-floor Detroit flat. Within seconds, a stun grenade smashed through a window, exploding over the couch. Armed, black-clad and masked police officers swarmed into the living room and, moments later, Aiyana lay bleeding to death with a gunshot wound to her head. "As soon as they came in, their guns were just pointing right there, and he pulled the trigger," Aiyana's grandmother, Mertilla Jones, 50, said today during the Detroit police officer Joseph Weekley's involuntary manslaughter trial.
The May 2010 nighttime raid was in search of murder suspect who lived upstairs in the unit, and the cops were being shadowed by a crew from reality TV show The First 48. Weekley has said his gun accidentally fired when Jones bumped into him or grabbed it. But Jones testified she rolled onto the floor after the noise and flash from the grenade, and was on her stomach when Weekley stormed in. Last week, a neighbor testified that he tried to tell officers before they raided the home that children were inside. Under cross-examination today, Jones said the officers were negligent. "They knew there were children in there. So why would they come in there like that? They came to kill, and they killed a 7-year-old."