RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A Richmond family is grieving the loss of their 9-year-old daughter after she was killed in a shooting at Carter Jones Park Sunday. 

Police were called to the 2700 block of Bainbridge Street just before 7:30 p.m. Police say two children, a girl and a boy, were taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. 

Police say each had been shot. 

The girl, later identified by her parents as 9-year-old Markiya Simone Dickson, died at the hospital. The boy was initially said to be fighting for his life, but officials on Monday said his injuries were considered ‘non-life threatening.’

Markiya’s parents, Mark Whitfield and Ciara Dickson, told 8News that their family stopped by a community cookout at the park. They say men on the basketball court started shooting into the crowd and Markiya was running to safety when she was shot. 

Whitfield and Dickson say a part of their heart is now missing.

“She was my bundle of joy. I can’t get her back … my life is shattered,” Dickson said. 

Whitfield and Dickson told 8News their daughter was feisty and loved everyone, adding that she was the kind of person who would give you the shirt off her back. 

She was in 3rd grade and was set to perform in an upcoming talent show where she was going to sing a Justin Bieber song, her parents said.

The heartbroken parents are now begging the community to report any information to the police. 

“She was my everything. A part of my heart is missing. I leave out the house with three kids and I come back with two. This is not right. Don’t nobody understand this hurt,” Dickson told 8News.  

Major Crimes detectives are continuing to investigate. Detectives believe many people were in the park at the time of the shooting and ask that they provide information to detectives about this incident.

“This is a heartbreaking case where a young child’s life was taken and another child was injured due to gun violence,” said Major Crimes Lieutenant Faith Flippo. “We believe there were many people in the park last night and we’re asking anyone with information, photos or videos to provide it to detectives. Even the smallest bit of information could help us bring closure for both of these families.”

Anyone with photos, video, or information about this homicide is asked to email Major Crimes Detective Benjamin Neifeld at or (804) 646-3246 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000 or at

The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones may also be used. All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

This is a developing story; check back for updates. 

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