Family of teen shot in Brooklyn park hold vigil, rally against gun violence

BOERUM HILL, Brooklyn (WABC) -- The family of 16-year-old Kyla-Simone Sobers-Batties held a vigil and rally against gun violence Monday at the Brooklyn park where the teenager was struck in the head by a stray bullet Friday.

It happened as the Cobble Hill High School senior sat on a bench with friends at the Gowanus Playground in Boerum Hill.

Police have released pictures of the suspects for whom they are searching, who appeared to be teenagers and were seen fleeing the scene.

Sobers-Batties is lucky to be alive and is recovering from surgery.

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Her mom, Nadine Sobers, spoke out exclusively to Eyewitness News, saying her daughter underwent surgery Saturday and is able to communicate by gestures.

"This is hard," she said. "I've given birth, I can do that. This is the hardest thing I've done in my life."

On Monday, she spoke to supporters at the rally.

"We can't just keep saying it can't happen to me, because it can," she said. "I never though that my daughter going to school on Friday morning would end up with my daughter being in the hospital Monday afternoon, and I'm still fearful. And I know I have to be positive, but that fear is still there, the possibility that it could go left instead of it keep going steady. And I have to be strong for my daughter, and sometimes all I really want to do is curl up in a ball and scream. Because how do I help her when I'm so scared that I might lose her?"

Neighbors said the park was filled with families and children when gunfire erupted, sending everyone scrambling.

Kyla is recovering at Brooklyn Methodist, and doctors were able to remove the bullet from her head that thankfully did not hit her brain.

She has to be intubated to keep the swelling down.

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Police are searching for three suspects, all males wearing dark clothing. One took off on a scooter, another on Citi Bike, and the third fled off on foot.

Kyla's family is praying for her full recovery and that the suspects are caught.

Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

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