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Family members seek justice for Naya Ruffin

Naya Ruffin.png
Posted at 8:36 PM, Jun 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-02 20:36:19-04

INDIANAPOLIS — According to her family, Naya Ruffin was quiet and fun. She was different and extravagant.

She was also feisty, but one of the kindest people you would ever meet.

At about 1 a.m. on April 29, Ruffin was shot in the 5700 block of San Paulo Circle on the city’s northeast side.

She later died at a local hospital.

More than a month later, her family is ready to share their memories of her and ask for the community’s help in finding the person responsible for her death.

“Naya was not perfect,” Alexis Coats, Ruffin’s older sister said. “Nobody is. But she was close to it.”

Coats said that Ruffin was a scholar student, and the family is still confused by who would do this to their loved one.

They are seeking justice for their sister.

“(Justice) is everything,” Coats said. “Naya did not deserve this. This wasn’t her doing. She wasn’t running in the streets. She was a scholar student. This had nothing to do with her. She would never put herself in this situation. Justice is everything. (The person that did this) deserves to hurt as much as we are hurting.”

According to Coats, Ruffin was a loving mother to her daughter Novah.

“She was the best mom,” Coats said. “She loved her daughter more than anything.”

Novah is one-year-old and turns two in August.

The family has turned their attention to being there for Novah and learning to live without Naya.

“Now we are just trying to find a way to live without her,” Coats said. “It is so hard. It is something we never expected. I am still getting used to not talking to her. It has been a little over a month now and that is the longest it has ever been without talking to her. We grew up together. She was part of my everyday life. Finding a way without her…. Its hard. It is hard to be positive to Novah, but we just want to make sure she is ok.”

The family is currently raising money for Novah.

The incident remains under investigation by Detective Matthew Melkey. Anyone with information is asked to call him at 317-327-3475 or email him at

“If you do know something – think of it as being your little sister. You would want justice for them. Naya deserves it,” Coats said.