Kid-friendly memorial held in Detroit for 6-year-old Tai'raz Moore
Detroit — Loved ones held a memorial Saturday for a 6-year-old boy who was found dead in the basement of his father's Warren home two weeks ago.
More than one hundred people gathered at the Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre to celebrate the life of Tai'raz Moore with a kid-friendly gathering that featured carnival rides, a petting zoo, cotton candy and hot dogs.
"My baby loved to play," said his mother, Brittany Harris, at the service. "In fact, he played so much he would get on my nerves playing."
As children enjoyed the activities outside of the theater, family and friends inside took turns speaking about Tai'raz, describing him as fearless and loving.
Tai'raz Moore was found dead Oct. 1 along with Isis Rimson, who was the girlfriend of his father, Tukoyo Moore, in the basement of Moore's home on the 2200 block of Otis.
On Tuesday, Nicholas Raad Bahri, 37, a West Bloomfield Township man with a criminal history dating back to 2004, was arraigned on 15 counts, including three charges of premeditated homicide and related weapons offenses, arson and disinterment and mutilation of a dead body, in the case.
Both Tai'Raz and Rimson, 28, were found with gunshot blasts to the head, Warren Police Commissioner William Dwyer said. According to an autopsy result, Moore, 32, had also been shot in the head.
Early in the investigation, Dwyer had called for the death penalty for whoever was responsible for the slayings.
"Violent acts among drug dealers is not new," said Dwyer at a press conference Tuesday. "But killing a baby, a 6-year-old, has shaken not just the tri-county area but has shocked the nation. ... Only monsters or godless creatures would pull the trigger on a 6-year old."
Investigators say they discovered the bodies during a welfare check hours after Detroit police found the boy's dad burned up in the rear seat of a vehicle on Detroit's east side.
On Saturday, 20 seats spaced 6 feet apart from each other on the stage were filled by members of the boy's family. His great aunt, Crystal Bailey, greeted guests at the start of the ceremony that began slightly before 2 p.m.
Thirteen-year-old Jayson Massive opened the service with a rap song, "Time for Change," that he wrote for the event.
At the end of the rhyme, he turned to Tai'raz's mother and sang to her: "People in poverty, the scammers they tryna eat. Our love ones, the on the T. We fighting to get our peace. Justice for Floyd, justice for Breonna Taylor. Justice for my boy Tai'raz, him and his family are in my prayers."
Detroit’s Youth Choir followed Massive’s performance, singing 3 of their renditions: High Hope, Stand By Me and Glory.
Moore's aunt, Jayla Jones, 26, could barely speak as she took the stage to give condolences to her sister, Tai'raz's mom. Her 3-year-old son, Elijah Juan, ran up on the stage to hug and comfort his mother during the emotional moment.
"Tai'raz was my only nephew and my sister's only son," she said fighting back tears. "I can't imagine my sister's pain."
Moore's older sister, Madison Harris, 10, described her brother as strong and said he was her favorite person in the world.
Debbie Williams, who brought her 5-year-old granddaughter to Saturday's event, said the girl made a sign to carry while they were there. It read: "Monsters kill children."
The Detroit Police Departments chief's neighborhood liaison, Commander Kyra Joy Hope, offered condolences to the family and said, "Please know we all share in your grief."
Malik Shabazz, a local minister who gave the keynote speech at the service, said Detroit is in crisis right now.
"Violence is becoming the norm. Every day, it's who's being killed, who's being murdered in Detroit right now. We have a violence problem, and the only way out is love."
Tai'raz's mother concluded the event with a recollection of her last conversation with her son, whom she said was discussing taking his loose tooth out the next day.
"Tomorrow never came," Harris tearfully said.