TOPEKA (KSNT) – Crowds gathered Saturday to ‘March 4 Zoey.’ Five-year-old Zoey Felix of Topeka was brutally murdered Monday night, and community members are looking for answers.
Topeka police arrested 25-year-old Mickel Cherry, who was confirmed to be homeless, on Tuesday on suspicion of the rape and murder of Felix. Cherry has been charged with capital murder, but the community isn’t satisfied.
“She kind of slipped through the cracks,” April Cohagen of Topeka said. “And this is another child here that slipped through, and we need justice for her. She absolutely needs to be spoken for, and we’re her voice.”
Cohagen, along with what appeared to be 100 people showed up to Saturday’s march. The group started at Every Plaza before ending at the Kansas Statehouse. Many had signs, while others wore ‘March 4 Zoey’ t-shirts.
Jenner Cochran, a Topeka dad, organized the event via Facebook.
“This just really hit him hard,” Jill Cochran, Jenner’s mother, said. “To realize it can happen anywhere, and to feel like a child is not safe in their community.”
Those in attendance said they believe in strength in numbers in instances like this.
“It helps for everybody to come out and speak out and say things and stand up for what you believe in,” Diana Swafford of Topeka said.
They’re calling on lawmakers to put an end to violence, especially when it involves children.
“I think when you have this many people together, you kind of feel that emotional connection a little bit more and how close people are together,” Dylan Gates, another event organizer, said. “We’re all pretty similar, we’re all living the same life going through the same things, just trying to get through the day.”