NEWARK, New Jersey (WABC) -- On a sports field in Newark on Friday night, many chanted through their shock. They chanted the name of Zahmire Lopez - an 8-year-old who was murdered in cold blood.
"To me, he could have been the next superhero character stuntman guys, 'cause he'd do backflips and he was just a good kid. It's rough, it's rough - it's hard to take in right now," said football coach Sunny Amos.
It was chaos on Wednesday night when a shooter burst into Lopez's home and started firing. The gunman shot two men, one of them fatally, and then ripped Lopez out of his mother's arms, shooting the 8-year-old in the chest.
Lopez's mother escaped out a second-floor window. Police later shot and killed the suspect as he tried to run. Police found drugs and three firearms at the scene.
"New Jersey has some of the toughest gun laws in the nation, but everybody don't have those gun laws, and we're not isolated from the nation," said Newark Mayor Ras Baraka.
Mayor Baraka says he has invested heavily in violence interrupters and improved community resources, but the flow of guns has not stopped.
"I don't feel defeated. I don't feel like this is where we are. I don't have the luxury of pessimism so at the end of the day, I think we will be victorious -- we just got to keep pushing and pressing," Baraka added.
Pushing and pressing past the candles and tears - and the balloons - for eight-year-olds who never had a chance.
It still is not clear what led to the shooting. The investigation continues. However, the details will not bring Lopez back - or console his heartbroken mother a week before Mother's Day.
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