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Sharpton urges mourners to help Detroit

He told those grieving the death of a 7-year-old girl that all share blame for the city's violence.

DETROIT - Hundreds of people turned out Saturday for the funeral of a 7-year-old Detroit girl killed in a police raid and were told they must help stop the violence that has recently swept the city.

The Rev. Al Sharpton gave the eulogy for Aiyana Stanley-Jones, who died last Sunday when a police bullet struck her in the neck.

Sharpton questioned whether officers in the city's affluent suburbs would throw a stun grenade into a house before entering as Detroit officers did. But he said that although he could criticize Detroit police and political leaders, he would rather offer a broader message to the community.

"I'd rather tell you to start looking at the man in the mirror. We've all done something that contributed to this," he said of Aiyana's death.

He called on the congregation at Second Ebenezer Church to help stop violence in the city, saying: "This is it. This child is the breaking point."

The top half of Aiyana's coffin was open before the service at the 3,000-seat contemporary Baptist church. A flower arrangement shaped like a princess' crown and bearing Aiyana's name was on a stand behind the casket.

Anthony Givens, 55, of Detroit, said he knew Aiyana's family and last saw the child when he paid a brief visit on Mother's Day.

"She was playing, joyful, laughing with her brothers," Givens said.

Police have said an officer's gun accidentally fired in the house after he was jostled by, or collided with, the girl's grandmother. A lawyer for Aiyana's family has sued and claims the shot was fired from the porch after the grenade was lobbed through a window.

"It's a very sad thing," Givens said. "I think they should concentrate on burying the young lady instead of all this ruckus."