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Iowa woman attending demonstrations killed after hit by random bullet, two cops put on leave

Italia Marie Kelly
Italia Marie Kelly
Italia Marie Kelly
Italia Marie Kelly

Italia Marie Kelly Davenport, Iowa woman killed by random bullet while attending civil unrest demonstrations. No arrests made. 

A 22-year-old Iowa woman has died after being hit by a random bullet while leaving protests for George Floyd she’d attended in Davenport. Of note, the woman was one of two fatal shootings reported overnight during demonstrations in the city according to reports.

Italia Marie Kelly who’d gone to the demonstration with a friend, collapsed after being struck by a bullet from behind according to her aunt. The Quad City Times reports reports the woman being hit through her shoulder and chest. 

Police said she was pronounced dead at a local hospital. 

‘She was always smiling, always laughing,’ her aunt Amy Hale told via the desmoinesregister. ‘That’s why it’s so sad that she was taken in such a violent way.’

‘That is not Italia,’ she said. ‘She was the bright, bubbly big personality in the room.’

Was Kelly along with second victim struck by police bullet? 

Kelly had decided to leave the demonstrations when it became unruly, her aunt said.

Police said dozens of protesters had gathered at the North Park Mall earlier on Sunday, and later fanned out in cars, damaging property and firing guns — including the shooting of an occupied police cruiser around 3 a.m. Monday.

Police Chief Paul Sikorski said at least one of the officers in the cruiser returned fire.

A vehicle fleeing the scene crashed during a police chase and several people were taken into custody, but no charges have been announced.

The second gunshot victim, who was not identified, was found nearby, but police have not determined if he was struck by a police bullet, the chief said.

‘All of the things that we responded to throughout the night were acts of violence,’ Sikorski said.

Hale said she was not surprised to learn that her niece wanted to protest police brutality. She said Kelly, who was biracial, was outspoken about racial inequality and posted frequently about it on Facebook.

‘Whenever there was an injustice, whenever she felt like someone wasn’t being treated fairly, she wasn’t one of those that would stand quietly on the sidelines,’ Hale said. ‘She was the first one to express her (opinion) and try to right what was going on.’

‘She wasn’t about the violence,’ Hale added. ‘She wasn’t about the looting and the rioting. She was about justice.’

The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is now investigating the shootings, and two Davenport police officers have been placed on administrative leave, Sikorski said. No arrests have been made.