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‘I pray her family will forgive me’; Man says he could have saved 14-year-old from being killed


Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 7:14 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Metro Police are looking for a teenage girl who stabbed and killed a 14-year-old girl in a Walmart parking lot on Dickerson Pike.

People in that area say it’s common for underage kids to be out at the store late at night. Walter Duggins says he was in the parking lot at the time and wishes he had stepped in to help.

“First off, I heard the helicopter,” says Duggins.

He says a helicopter was flying low on Monday night, and he knew something wasn’t right.

“Last night, I didn’t follow my instincts; I didn’t follow my feeling I normally go by,” says Duggins.

He says had he been parked closer to the bus stop, he could have saved 14-year-old Malia Powell’s life.

Metro Police say Powell and another girl started arguing inside Walmart. They say that fight went into the parking lot and ended at the WeGo bus stop. Police say the stabber charged Powell with a pocketknife, stabbed her, and fled.

While the scene ended at the bus stop, Duggins believes it should have finished inside the store.

“My opinion, something should have been done then,” Duggins says. “Why are 14 15-year old’s out at that time at night?”

Sandra McDaniel agrees someone inside should have stopped the fight.

“A 14-year-old to lose her life and get stabbed,” says McDaniel. “That’s bad – there’s no sense in that. There should be something done.”

It’s a fight Duggins says shouldn’t have killed Powell if he was there.

“I pray that her family will forgive me, and she’ll forgive me for not being there – even though I didn’t know her,” he says.

The teen suspect is believed to be white with brown and purple hair. Police say she and Powell did not know each other. Anyone with more information is asked to call Crime Stoppers.

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