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St. Louis grandma opens up after her 15-year-old granddaughter's murder, still in disbelief

"We are all taking this so hard. I still believe the boy should've been charged with first-degree murder," Rosie Valentine said.

ST. LOUIS — It's been two weeks since 15-year-old Emily Valentine was shot in her face and killed. 

The girl's grandmother still cannot believe what happened to her granddaughter.

"I'm just so upset. I know my side of the family is taking it pretty hard and I know her side of the family as well," Rosie Valentine said.

Valentine said on Feb. 28, Emily's former boyfriend picked her and her 14-year-old sister up from their aunt's home in south St. Louis.

Valentine said Emily's sister told police the 15-year-old boy drove them to the 3700 block of Minnesota Avenue, shot Emily in her face and then the young suspect took off in a stolen car.

"He put her out of that stolen car and left her in the alley for dead," said the girl's grandmother.

The eighth grader died on the way to a hospital.

Emily's sister wasn't hurt.

On Thursday, prosecutors charged the 15-year-old boy with second-degree murder.

"I think he should have been charged with first-degree murder. It was premeditated. He knew what he was doing and why he picked her up," said Valentine.

It's not the first time the family's faced the tragic loss of a loved one.

On August 2, 2015, Emily's 23-year-old father, Dorian Valentine, was shot six times and left to die in an alley in North City.

Rosie had sole custody of her granddaughter. 

"Emily was smart, intelligent. The girl made good grades. She wasn't an angel by any means, but I think she just got with the wrong people," added her grandmother.

From community activists to city officials to clergy members, they all continue to speak out against the teen violence that isn't letting up.

Records show from Jan. 1 - March 2, 2023, 12 kids have been shot in the City of St. Louis. Four of the young victims died.

"I know I will be at every court hearing for him, and I know justice will be served for my granddaughter," Rosie said.

Investigators said the 15-year-old suspect was already in custody in St. Louis County on an unrelated charge.

Meanwhile, Emily's family is now preparing for her funeral.

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