*A little girl said to be on her way to her cousin’s house never got there. One of the last sightings of her was at a store, where she was captured on camera paying for something at a cash register, and the next time she was seen, she was dead on the side of the road. Now, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley has offered a $5,000 reward for information that will lead to an arrest in the murder of 8-year-old Hiawayi Robinson of Prichard. But the governor also has some explaining to do. He has been accused of racial profiling the family based on insensitive statements he made at a press conference.
The body of the little girl, who had been seen walking to her cousin’s apartment around 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon, was found behind an abandoned building on Rebel Road the Thursday after. Her family had reported her missing two days before when they learned she had never reached her destination.
Hiawayi would have celebrated her 9th birthday in another week.
Gov. Bentley has received intense criticism for what some people are calling racial profiling of the family. At a press conference he made comments I am sure he would not have, had the little girl been white.
“There are things that happen we just don’t understand. There are difficulties in families. You never know, it may be drug related, it may be alcohol related. It may be family problems. We just don’t know what the situation is,” he said.
“How dare the Governor!!! I have a call into the Governor’s office DEMANDING an apology! I’m waiting for him to call me back. His words are TOTALLY unacceptable, and we will not tolerate it!!!”
On Friday afternoon, Sen. Vivian Figures, D-Mobile, sent an open letter to Bentley demanding he apologize for his comments.
“To speak of drugs, alcohol and family problems being connected with her death was totally uncalled for,” she wrote. “How could you, as a father and a grandfather, make such a comment after the devastating loss of a child to her family and our community?”
Bentley has put up a $5,000 reward (I wonder if he did this before or after the outrage from the senator) for any information that leads to an arrest of the murdered. He states, “We won’t rest until this little girl’s killer is brought to justice.”
The family has set up a GoFundMe donation page to help bury their child. For more information on the donations and funeral visit WKRG.com
Rest peacefully, little angel.
Read more details at AL.com. and watch the WKRG News 5 video report directly below.