Girl, 4, Shot Dead; Neighbor Arrested

Starlan Blain, a 4-year-old Quartz Hill girl, was killed Saturday when a shotgun was fired into a doghouse in Lancaster where she was playing.

Marc Gillespie, 30, of Lancaster was arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and was being held Sunday in lieu of $22,000 bail. Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy Chris Robbins said Gillespie, who has a history of randomly firing guns after he drinks, had been drinking Saturday.

Starlan's mother, Deborah Carter, said the family had driven to the mountains most weekends, but were in town Saturday because they could not afford gasoline.

"It was like a weekend ritual . . . because she loved the mountains. . . . That's the saddest part, if we would have had the money, she would have never been playing there."

A memorial fund has been set up to help offset the Carters' funeral expenses.

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