Girl, 15, killed in drive-by was newcomer who came to Montreal to study and live with sister
MONTREAL -- The 15-year-old girl who was fatally shot in a drive-by attack on Sunday had come to Quebec from Algeria to study, say people in her community.
Meriem Boundaoui lived with her older sister, said a spokeswoman from the group Muslim Burial Association in Quebec, which posted a notice of her death on Monday.
Boundaoui, who would have turned 16 next month, was sitting in a parked car with a friend at about 6 p.m. on Sunday, on a residential street in Saint-Leonard, when she was shot in the head.
She was caught in the crossfire of some sort of altercation that had nothing to do with her, according to how Montreal police described it.
Her friend was talking to a small group of pedestrians when another group began shooting at them from a car driving by, police said.
On Tuesday, Quebec’s coroner’s office also confirmed her identity.
“Her parents and family are in Algeria,” wrote the burial association. Others in the community wrote online that she came from the city of Béjaïa, a port city on the Mediterranean.
They said she arrived in the Montreal area to study since two older sisters had settled here years previously.
Boundaoui lived in La Prairie, on the South Shore, and attended Pierre-Bedard high school in St-Remi.
Her brother in law, Said Benyahia, told La Presse that she’d been living on the South Shore for the last two years.
“She was a studious girl and wasn’t in the habit of going out like that,” told the paper, adding that they got so concerned on Sunday when, after leaving the house in the morning, she wasn’t home by late afternoon, that they called the police.
“We were worried about the curfew… we should have been worried about something else entirely,” he said, adding that they’ve been “really in shock” and feeling “helplessness” since her death.
The young man who was in the car with her was also from an Algerian family and had been dating her for a few weeks, he told La Presse, and the two had been parked to get pastries from a local bakery on Jean-Talon at the time, he said.