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Vigil held for slain Highland Park reserve officer

James David Dickson
The Detroit News
Arneatha Reynolds, wife of Highland Park Officer Robert Ball, hugs neighbor Amy, 7, during a vigil on Monday to honor the slain officer.

Family and community members turned out for a vigil for a Highland Park reserve police officer who died after being shot at a block party in Detroit in August.

Robert Ball died Friday from his injuries, the city said.

Ball, 58, was one of about 70 volunteer officers who assist sworn officers in Highland Park in securing community events, said Marli Blackman, spokeswoman for the city of Highland Park. Ball had been hospitalized since the shooting and underwent two surgeries, he had been expected to recover, Blackman said. He died of an infection Friday.

A fundraiser is planned for Sunday, and Ball was expected to attend. But once the infection took hold “it was a downhill spiral from there,” Blackman said. Instead, a vigil was held in his honor at Monday at Teppert and East State Fair near his home.

Ball served an auxiliary officer since 2007. Blackman described Ball as “well-loved and well-liked and a happy guy” and said reserve officers such as Ball are not only unpaid, but “they actually pay us” through their service.

There had been a block party on Teppert on the night of Aug. 27 and the gathering was in its late stages at about 2:30 a.m. Aug. 28 when Ball was shot, Detroit police said.

“Something spiraled and he was caught in the crossfire,” Blackman said at the time.

An official cause and manner of death for Ball is still pending, said Lloyd Jackson, spokesman for the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office.