MILWAUKEE -- Bernice Parks, the mother of Sandra Parks, 13, spoke with FOX6 News Sunday, June 9 on the eve of the start of the jury trial for the man accused of firing the shot that killed the Milwaukee eighth-grader. Sandra Parks lost her life when a bullet entered her home near 13th and Hopkins on Nov. 19, 2018.
Parks' family said they were hopeful the trial would bring answers to questions about why that bullet came flying into their living room as Sandra Parks watched television.
Before she died, Sandra Parks used words to express her thoughts about violence in Milwaukee, placing third among sixth-graders in the 33rd city-wide MLK Day essay contest -- her own words especially poignant in the wake of her passing.
"Because Sandra wasn't a person that you can forget about," said Bernice Parks.
Prosecutors said Isaac Barnes, 27, pulled the trigger. Untrell Oden, 28, helped Barnes hide his guns after the shooting, according to prosecutors.
"Oh my God -- they took -- I can't say my life, because I'm still living, but I'm barely here. They took a piece of my heart. I can't trust nobody no more," said Bernice Parks.
Barnes was found hiding in a closet after the shooting, prosecutors said. Investigators found two guns that matched casings found at the scene of the shooting.
"We need justice, and it's time to tell the story," said Jasmine Ousley, Sandra Parks' godmother. "They took something from us that we can't get back. No matter how long we sit and wait for Sandra to walk through the door, we know she not, and I don't feel they deserve to walk out of there, period."
"At the end of the day, he needs to suffer for what he did. I don't think he should ever get out of jail," said Bernice Parks.
Barnes' jury trial was scheduled to begin Monday morning, June 10. A plea hearing was scheduled for Oden July 11.