‘It sounded like fireworks’: Algiers community heartbroken by death of seven-year-old

Dillan Burton, 7, was killed while riding in the car with her mother. Community members say they’re no strangers to gunfire, but this one hurts.
Published: Dec. 27, 2021 at 3:25 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 28, 2021 at 10:18 AM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Members of the Algiers community are decrying what they say is a “senseless” killing; a seven-year-old girl shot and killed while riding in the car with her mother.

Fox 8 spoke with the family of seven-year-old Dillan Burton. They confirmed her identity and said she was an “A” student who loved to dance and was planning on doing so in the upcoming parades.

Burton was shot and killed while riding in the car with her mother Sunday evening. Around the intersection of General DeGaulle Drive and Hendee St., her mother was driving with Burton and another child when her car started taking on gunfire.


Family members identify 7-year-old shot, killed in mother’s car

Suspect vehicle sought by NOPD in killing of 7-year-old Dillan Burton

“I just seen the little girl earlier playing in the yard, with her mom and her grandma, eating Christmas leftover food,” another woman said. “Right after Christmas? New Years? Wow. A baby, a child, a little girl, she didn’t even get the chance to enjoy her Christmas toys.”

People said they’re used to the sound of gunfire. They described gunfire during broad daylight, at parks and playgrounds.

“The kids now is so much worse than when I was growing up,” a woman said. “I mean they robbing people, stealing people’s cars. I mean you can’t even go to the gas station in some areas without being scared.”

New Orleans Police have not confirmed the identity of suspect(s) or any potential motive.

Police released a photo of a suspect vehicle, a newer model white and silver Chevrolet pickup truck, caught on video fleeing the location of the shooting.

New Orleans police are seeking this newer model white and silver Chevrolet pickup truck with a...
New Orleans police are seeking this newer model white and silver Chevrolet pickup truck with a bed cover on its back in connection with Sunday's fatal shooting of 7-year-old Dillan Burton in Algiers.(Photo provided by NOPD)

Mayor LaToya Cantrell and NOPD Chief Shaun Ferguson released a joint statement on Monday:

“We stand in shock over the violence that claimed the life of a 7-year-old child, the day after Christmas. It is unbearably tragic. As a City, as a community - we reject this. How often have we said, ‘One is too many?’ This one, alone, is too much. This child deserved better of us. Somebody out there knows who pulled the trigger. We need them to come forward. The NOPD is devoting the full force of our resources to holding this shooter accountable - and we will demand the same of our partners in the courts and at the DA’s office. This is a time for us to come together. This will not be tolerated by us as leaders of our City or our people.”

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