Girl, 12, Was Killed by Stray Bullet While Walking Home with Father and Brother

Authorities said Aliza Spencer, 12, was killed by a single gunshot wound to the chest

Aliza Spencer
Photo: Facebook

A 12-year-old girl walking with her family was fatally shot across the street from her Binghamton, N.Y., home, authorities said.

Binghamton Mayor Jared Kraham told reporters during a news conference on Friday that Aliza Spencer was killed just after 10 p.m. local time Thursday by a single gunshot wound to the chest.

Aliza was walking home with her father and her 13-year-old brother when she was reportedly struck by a "small caliber bullet," Kraham revealed.

Investigators with the Binghamton Police Department were unable to provide a suspect description and are still investigating a possible motive in Aliza's killing, but assured the public that "every possible law enforcement resource available is being assigned to this case."

"This is truly heartbreaking," Kraham said. "[Aliza was] a very bright, talented student, honor roll. She was a softball player, and well-loved by teachers and classmates, alike."

On Saturday, the Binghamton School District said it was "devastated by the tragic loss of our bright, talented student, Aliza Spencer."

Authorities said it is unknown if the girl was targeted. They are still trying to determine where the gunshot came from, although a drive-by shooting has been ruled out, police chief Joseph Zikuski confirmed.

"We are 100 percent sure it was not a drive-by," he told reporters.

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Aliza was shot together in a "relatively quiet neighborhood" in Binghamton. Zikuski called her alleged murder "horrendous" and "alarming."

The girl's family did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

A GoFundMe campaign, which was just $870 shy of reaching its $3,000 goal at the time of publishing, has been organized to help the family cover funeral costs.

A $19,500 reward — up from $10,000 on Friday — is being offered for information that leads to an arrest.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Binghamton detectives at 607-772-7080.

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