Teen recovering after being shot in the neck on her way to get ice cream in Tacoma

It’s been more than a day since Shadra, the mother of a teen shooting victim, has slept.

Talking to FOX 13 on Sunday – roughly 24 hours after her 15-year-old daughter was shot – Shadra puts it plainly: "She could have died."

Shadra does not want to name her daughter publicly, but wants justice for what happened to her.

On Saturday afternoon her teen daughter was in a car with friends in Tacoma. They were heading to get ice cream when they drove up to the intersection of South 56th and Yakima Avenue.

Four teenagers shot while in car in Tacoma

Tacoma Police say four teenagers were struck by gunfire while in a car on Saturday.

"It happened so fast," she said. "They pulled up to the light – and gunshots were going off as they pulled up to the light."

According to Tacoma police, the flurry of bullets ended with four teenagers being injured – Shadra’s daughter got the worst of it taking gunshots to both her neck, and her shoulders. 

As of Sunday night, one of the bullets is still in the teen girl as she recovers at Harborview Medical Center. Doctors, Shadra said, fear that removing the bullet could be more harmful than leaving it in.

"She feels like she’d rather be dead," said the mother. "She’s in so much pain they have to heavily medicate her. She’s not understanding why she got shot. She doesn’t run the streets. She stays home!"

Investigators haven’t released many details about the shooting.

Shortly after the initial call around 5:30 p.m. they noted that five teens had driven to Saint Joseph’s hospital after they had been shot at by another car. Four of the teens – a 15-year-old woman, a 16-year-old woman and two 17-year-olds – had been hit. 

FOX 13 News has learned that someone in another vehicle opened fire on the teens. Shadra said the teens were laying across her daughter’s body after she was shot – and that the 18-year-old who was behind-the-wheel likely saved her life by rushing to the hospital to seek help.

As Shadra’s daughter recovers, there’s frustration that the case hasn’t garnered more attention.

An activist who works on issues of violence against Black youth connected with the family following the shooting, and drove up from Portland to help the victim’s families – she spent time talking to local businesses about their security footage.

She raised concerns about the speed at which information has come out – and questioned by police hadn’t been working to put out security footage that a store clerk had showed her.

"I just think it’s a shame that a mass shooting of Black children after what happened in Buffalo, New York – that there’s video coverage right there at the store of the license plate number and you’re not tearing this state up trying to find that individual. Before they leave here!"

Workers at two businesses located at the corner where the shooting took place told FOX 13 that police had initially stopped by, and told them they’d return on Sunday to review footage. Asked why video hadn’t been collected, or released a Tacoma police spokesperson said that they plan to canvas for video on Monday of any places they have not already visited.

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It’s unclear if they have a license plate of a potential suspect, but Tacoma police noted they don’t release video of suspects unless they are doing a Crime Stoppers bulletin.

As for Shadra, her biggest concern is her daughter’s recovery.
"It’s going to be a long road," she said, noting her daughter had suffered nerve damage on one side of her face, and struggled to get out of her hospital bed for most of Saturday.