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"The damage is done": Mom of Cape Coral teen pleads for justice

Kayla Rincon-Miller was shot and killed on March 17
Posted at 3:44 PM, Apr 03, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-03 17:01:29-04

CAPE CORAL, Fla. — The family of 15-year-old Kayla Rincon-Miller were forced to say goodbye to their little girl on March 17 after she was shot and killed in southeast Cape Coral. Now, her mother is speaking out for her daughter. She's giving her a voice again and sending a message to the people who killed her — still on the run.

"It's just been very hard, very hard," said Luz Rincon, Kayla's mother.

Luz Rincon talked with Cape Coral Police spokesperson and former Fox 4 anchor, Lisa Greenberg.

The mother says she dropped Kayla off at the movies on March 17. Hours later, her phone rang.

"I thought that it was her calling me, regarding to come pick her up," Luz said. "I hear the girls in the background telling me that she was shot."

Luz thought it was a prank, but it didn't take long to find out it wasn't.

"I heard Kayla's voice in the background telling her friend, asking her friend, telling her friend is she going to die," Luz said.

Police say a car came up to Kayla and her two friends on SE 16th Place near SE 20th Street. Detectives say the people in the car tried to rob them before shots were fired. Kayla was hit and died at the hospital. In a press conference, police say the incident was not random.

"We were just loss without words," Luz said. "I think the first few days I couldn't sleep, barely could eat."

The mother says even two weeks later, the pain is still there as she thinks about her daughter and the future she could have had.

"Kayla was a fighter," Luz said. "The damage is done...we just want justice for her now."

Officers arrested 16-year-old Thomas Stein two days after the shooting. He has been charged with principle to a murder during a robbery. Police say the other people in the car are still on the run.

"Whoever they are, whoever it is, you know, if you are watching and you are hearing me, please turn yourself in," Luz said. "We will never get Kayla back, but we just want justice for Kayla."

If you know anything, you're asked to call Cape Coral Police or Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers.