Suspected shooter in death of 7-year-old Pontiac girl arraigned on murder charges

Posted at 4:09 PM, Mar 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-25 16:09:32-04

(WXYZ) — Oakland County Sheriff's Office announced Friday that the accused shooter in the death of 7-year-old Ariah Jackson was arraigned Friday on murder charges. Jackson was shot last Friday while riding in the back seat of a vehicle near the intersection of Paddock and Wilson.

Officials say 19-year-old Justin Jayshon Rouser was arraigned on 10 felony charges, including first-degree murder. Rouser reportedly faces life in prison without parole.

The sheriff's office says Rouser will also be charged with four counts of assault with intent to commit murder and five counts of possession of a firearm while in the commission of a felony.

“The wrong people are afraid in our community. We must make those who carry and use weapons illegally and perpetrate this violence the ones who are fearful of the certainty of long prison time," said Sheriff Michael Bouchard in a statement. "Children coming home from school should never be afraid. These suspects must be held accountable.”

Rouser is a member of the street gang known as '4-Block' according to police. He was reportedly arrested Wednesday in Troy by sheriff's detectives and agents. Detectives say they believe that he was hiding out.

Oakland County Sheriff’s Office is still searching for the suspected getaway driver in connection to the case.

The sheriff’s office says there is an up to $10,000 reward offered for information leading to the arrest of 17-year-old JaJuan Calvin McDonald of Pontiac. Officials say he drove the car used in a gang-related shooting that led to the death of Ariah Jackson.

RELATED: Pontiac town hall addresses violence after 7-year-old killed in drive-by shooting

The sheriff's office says McDonald is facing charges of first-degree murder, four counts of assault with intent to murder and four counts of possession of a firearm while in the commission of a felony. The sheriff’s office says McDonald is being charged as an adult.

“I am proud of our team and grateful for the assistance of ATF agents as they worked seamlessly to quickly identify the suspects in this horrific and senseless murder of an innocent child,” Sheriff Michael Bouchard said in a press release.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK UP. You can remain anonymous.