14-year-old cheerleader killed after clash outside Walmart store, TN cops say

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A 14-year-old cheerleader was destined for high school when her life was cut short in Tennessee, officials said.

Malia Powell has been stabbed to death after police say an argument spilled out at a Walmart store on Monday June 20.

“My baby didn’t deserve this,” the girl’s mother, Eboni Ridley Powell, told WZTV. “She was only 14 years old.”

Powell is remembered as a “bubbly” member of a cheerleading squad and a determined student at Bellevue Middle School in Nashville. She completed eighth grade and was scheduled to enter high school in the fall, Metro Nashville Public Schools wrote in an emailed statement to McClatchy News.

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“If you think of Malia, you should think of a funny, kind, that girl who will be there for you and I think there should be other people in the world…like her,” Teiona Williamson said. at WKRN.

Officials said Malia was inside a Walmart around 10 p.m. when she and another teenage girl got into an argument.

“The exchange continued through the parking lot and to the WeGo bus stop on Dickerson Pike,” the Metro Nashville Police Department said June 21 in a news release. “The suspect allegedly asked Powell if she wanted to fight, then accused her while holding a pocket knife.”

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Homicide officers are investigating the case and are asking anyone with information about the other teenager to call 615-742-7463.

Meanwhile, the Nashville School District said it was “saddened by the tragic death” and has been working to offer counseling services. Officials said Malia left a lasting mark on Bellevue Middle School.

“Although she is no longer at BMS, this loss still leaves a void as she is still part of our family and community,” manager Seth Swihart told The Tennessean.

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