Suspected shooter in Pontiac drive-by that killed girl, 7, arrested; $10K reward offered for tips on driver

Charles E. Ramirez
The Detroit News

Pontiac — The suspected gunman in a drive-by shooting Friday that killed a girl, 7, has been arrested, authorities said, and a $10,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the alleged getaway driver of the vehicle, officials said Thursday.

JaJuan Calvin McDonald, 17, of Pontiac is wanted by investigators with the Oakland County Sheriff's Office for allegedly driving the car used in a gang-related shooting that killed Ariah Jackson, they said.


Officials said the man they suspect of firing the gun that killed Ariah was arrested Wednesday in Troy. Detectives plan to seek warrants Thursday to charge the suspect with multiple felonies, including first-degree murder.

Prosecutors have authorized charges against McDonald for his alleged role in the shooting. They have charged him with first-degree murder, four counts of assault with intent to murder and four counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

If convicted, he faces up to life in prison without parole for the first-degree murder charge.

Anyone with information on McDonald’s whereabouts should call Crime Stoppers of Michigan at 1 (800) SPEAK-UP. Tipsters remain anonymous.

More:'Enough is enough,' Pontiac residents say in wake of deadly drive-by

Police said Ariah was returning home from school with her mother at about 4:50 p.m. Friday near the intersection of Paddock and Wilson in Pontiac when she was fatally shot in the back of the head.

The girl was struck by gunfire while sitting inside a parked car driven by her mother and occupied by three other children.

Deputies took Ariah to the hospital where she was pronounced dead a short time later, according to authorities. Her mother was injured when a bullet grazed her head but declined treatment at the hospital and was released. Three other girls, ages 6, 7, and 11 were not injured.