Community shows support after 15-year-old girl's family finds her fatally shot while walking dog

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A Houston family is pleading for justice after their 15-year-old daughter was fatally shot while walking the family's dog.

Anna Machado said she has not slept since she said she found her 15-year-old daughter Diamond Alvarez shot 22 times at their neighborhood park on Park Manor near Markwood Lane on Tuesday night.

SEE RELATED STORY: 15-year-old girl shot and killed as she walked dog in SW Houston

"Come forward," Machado said. "If somebody knows something, just come forward."

On Saturday, more than 200 people showed up for a benefit at the same park where Alvarez was found dead. Machado said multiple local businesses, including JNT Auto Repair Shop and Beef & Buns donated food and supplies to help put the benefit together. The family said 100% of the proceeds will go toward Alvarez's funeral services.

"We feel great right now that so many people are coming by," Alvarez's aunt, Blanca Mejia said. "We feel very grateful."

Mejia said the family has been positively overwhelmed by the support from the community, including teachers and students from Madison High School, where Alvarez attended school.

Machado said while they are thankful for the support, the family has also experienced negative comments following Alvarez's murder, as well as harassment and intimidation.

Sarai Cuevas, Alvarez's cousin, said she experienced this when family and close friends gathered for a vigil at the neighborhood park this week.

"We've been getting harassed here," Cuevas said. "People and cars that we don't know. It's tension. People trying to intimidate us. They are not going to intimidate us. We're going to be here. We're not moving. We're staying."

The Houston Police Department said a dark-colored vehicle was seen leaving the area shortly after the shooting Tuesday night. Investigators are still searching for Alvarez's killer.

"We're screaming, 'Justice for Diamond,' every day," Mejia said, "And every day we will be here. We will continue to be here and the law enforcement, we let them know about everything and they are coming. They are swinging by. They are patrolling the area because they know that we're still here."

The family has also set up a GoFundMe page to help with funeral expenses. Some of the funeral services are open to the community. There will be a public viewing Thursday, Jan. 20 from 4 p.m.- 7 p.m. at the Forest Lawn Cemetery at 8601 Almeda Genoa Rd. It will be followed by the funeral service at 11 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 21 at the same location.

Houston police are asking anyone with surveillance video or more information on this case to call Crime Stoppers or the HPD Homicide Division at 713-308-9080.

Alvarez's death marks HPD's 11th homicide of 2022.

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