‘I Have to Bury My Baby': Family of Teen Killed in Drive-Through Pleads for Justice

Police say 19-year old Zuri Goff was shot and killed at a drive-through while getting food in southern Dallas

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The search continues for the people who shot and killed a 19-year old at a fast food drive through in Dallas.

Two days after the crime, his family is pleading with his killers to come forward.

Dallas police say 19-year old Zuri Goff was shot and killed outside of a Raising Cane’s Thursday night at the 8100 block of Hampton Road. Police said he was shot multiple times as he sat in the back seat of a car leaving the drive-through.

Dallas Fire-Rescue took Goff to an area hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Police said the two suspected shooters, whose identities have not been confirmed, ran from the restaurant on foot and remain at large at the time of this writing.

“Whoever did it, they need to know they didn’t do this to Zuri. They did this to Zuri's family. I have to bury my baby. You did this to me,” Goff’s mother, Chi Ballard, told NBC 5 on Saturday.

Ballard is going through the unimaginable as she plans a funeral for a child she said never left her side.

“You’d never think your child would go get something to eat at a drive-through and not make it home. You would just not imagine,” she said.

The family said they have no idea who would've done this to him.

"I don’t know why they would’ve done this to him. He was getting life together. But nothing he did was worth his life. He didn’t do anything worth his life,” Ballard said through tears.

Ballard family

Reflecting back on memories, Ballard said Goff was an avid football player at Duncanville High School and was the type of student who would root for the underdog at school.

“His teachers would call and say how much of a leader he was. He was that type of kid,” she said.

His mother recalls a time his teacher told her Goff had stood up for a special needs student who was being bullied.

“Every time they had a group project, Zuri would sit with him and say, ‘I got you man.’ That’s the type of person he was,” she remembers.

Goff leaves behind a one-year old baby girl.

Ballard family

“Unfortunately she’s going to only know her father through memories that she’s given,” Ballard said. “But a part of Zuri is going to live on through his daughter that now has to grow up without a father."

Adding to the family’s heartbreak, Goff’s grandfather had died in October. His grandmother, Charlene Ballard, said he would always check on her to make sure she was OK after losing her husband.

“I invited them in and offered them something to eat but they went out to get food instead,” she said. “I never knew that that would be the last time I’d see him.”

And just six months ago, Ballard said Goff's best was killed in Deep Ellum by another shooting. She said his friend’s mother has visited her since Goff’s death.

“And we have to lay our babies to rest over senseless, senseless violence,” said Ballard.

“These are monsters out here. We as a community need to put it into all of this. We got to stop it,” added Charlene.

Ballard said she hopes his killers hear what she has to say and turn themselves in.

"I’m figuring they’re just as young as my son is. With them doing violent things like that in the street – don’t make this your mother. I don’t wish this on anybody,” she said. “It’s not fair to me. Think about what you’re doing to the mothers of the people that you shot. I don’t understand."

Goff’s family is planning to hold his funeral in the coming days.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Kimberly Mayfield at 214-671-3646 or via email at kimberly.mayfield@dallascityhall.com.

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information called into Crime Stoppers that leads to the arrest and indictment. Call Crime Stoppers 24/7 at 214-373-TIPS (8477).

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