Funeral arrangements pending for teen shot on Christmas

Mark Hicks and Ursula Watson
The Detroit News

Detroit — Funeral arrangement for a 16-year-old shot in the head on Christmas day are pending.

Bernard Walker, was shot Thursday while hanging out at a friend's house in the 4100 block of Virginia Park, about three miles north of downtown.

The 10th grader was taken off life support at Henry Ford Hospital Friday, said Officer Jennifer Moreno of the Detroit Police Department.

"We haven't made funeral arrangements yet," said Bernard's mother Theresa Culbert Saturday. "He is still at the hospital so that they can give his organs to somebody."

Culbert said she has to sit down with family to discuss the funeral, which she said will most likely be held at James H. Cole Home for Funerals located at 2624 W. Grand Blvd., Detroit.

One of Bernard's friends, a 19 -year-old male is in custody for the shooting. The teen hasn't been arraigned at this time, said Moreno.

"The initial charges were felonious assault and felony firearm," she said. "However since he (Bernard) passed, it is up to the prosecutor to raise the charges."

Despite the fact that Culbert harbored concerns about her son's friend, "I don't believe he did it on purpose," she said. "It was truly an accident."

Detroit police initially said the group was playing with a gun when it discharged. Culbert said she believes one of the friends might have been demonstrating how he used the gun, possibly to commit a crime, and accidently shot her son.

Walker's friends were detained and questioned Thursday. The gun was brought into the home by one of the friends and did not belong to Walker said Moreno.

Bernard isn't the first child Culbert has lost. Her three-year-old boy, DaShawn, was struck by a teen driver while crossing the street in 1997, she said.

Bernard was the youngest of her children. He had turned 16 in October and attended Allen Academy in Detroit.

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