BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — The woman who was shot and killed in a Battle Creek home over the weekend spent most of her life without her father.
Kayla Babick, 24, was a young girl when her father, Andrew Babick, was convicted of killing two children in the 1990s. His conviction was overturned and he was released from prison last February.
But as a newly freed man, his relationship with his daughter would only last a little over a year.
Kayla died Sunday afternoon from a gunshot wound. Battle Creek Police said her boyfriend told them she laid on a gun that was sitting on a bed, causing it to fire.
“We’ve been crying … since yesterday,” said Chris Babick, the victim’s grandmother. “I just wonder if our tears ever run out.”
She said she learned of the news when she got a phone call from her son.
“He rushed here to the hospital but she was gone before he got here,” she said. “He said, ‘Mom, she’s gone.'”
“He said ‘I can’t go back and look at her.’ He said, ‘I just can’t do it,'” Babick continued.
Family members of Kayla Babick’s boyfriend identified him as Deangelo Gaines, 25. Police said there were no reports of problems between Gaines and the victim prior to the shooting incident.
After questioning, Gaines was allowed to return home from police headquarters. He entered the home as 24 Hour News 8 interviewed his mother and could be seen crying as loved ones tried to console him.
Chris Babick said her granddaughter had only been dating Gaines for a few months and that she’d only met him once before.
“I just don’t know what happened,” Babick said. “I still don’t know what happened. Probably nobody ever else will know exactly what happened.”
Kayla Babick leaves behind two young children. Chris Babick says the family is struggling to come up with the means to bury her and doesn’t know who will get custody of her children.
Babick said she’d purchased two burial plots at a local cemetery for herself and her husband. She’ll now give up one of them for her granddaughter.
“Never even entered my mind something like that would ever happen,” she said.
It is not yet clear whether Gaines will face charges in connection with the shooting. The investigation will likely be forwarded to the Calhoun County Prosecutor’s Office for a final determination to be made.
Gaines’ mother said her son did not want to comment on the incident Monday afternoon.
Chris Babick says her granddaughter will be missed.
“Her loving smile and how kind she is,” Chris Babick said. “She helped me so much when she was here.”
A GoFundMe page has been set up to cover funeral expenses.
**Correction: Citing Battle Creek Police Department sources, an earlier version of this article indicated Deangelo Gaines had accidentally shot Kayla Babick while cleaning his gun. Tuesday, Battle Creek Police said that since the beginning of their investigation Gaines had told them Babick laid on the gun on a bed, causing it to fire. The article has since been corrected.