BRONX, NY – Police are in full force seeking the person responsible for allegedly firing a shot that somehow found its way to the face of an 11 month old baby girl who was sitting in her family’s car.
The shooting has left the baby girl in critical but stable condition.
— 1010 WINS (@1010WINS) January 20, 2022
Members of the New York Police Department responded to a shooting on January 19th just before 7 pm around Valentine Avenue and East 198th Street.
When they arrived on scene, they learned that a small family had stopped near this location while the man ran inside of a deli.
While the man was inside of the deli, he left his wife and 11 month old daughter inside the vehicle, thinking all would be okay. Little did the young family know that there was about to be an armed dispute nearby.
Officers reported there appeared to be a dispute nearby between two men.
One of those men was allegedly captured on video surveillance firing at least two shots toward the other. However, instead of striking the other man, one of the rounds entered the car the baby was sitting in and struck her in the face.
Witnesses in the area saw the terrified mother jump out of the car and remove her bleeding infant from a car seat after the shooting occurred. The mother was frantically trying to do what she could to keep the baby alive until medics arrived on scene to assist her.
When medics arrived on scene, they were able to render aid and transported the baby to the St. Barnabas Hospital for medical treatment. The baby, who has not been identified, has been listed in critical but stable condition.
Democratic New York Mayor Eric Adams weighed in on this new senseless act of gun violence. He said:
“When I hear people say that we should not incarcerate those who are discharging bullets of death to our community, they need to talk to this mother. Enough is enough. If tonight wasn’t a wake-up call, then I don’t know what will wake us up.
“This is an assault and an abandonment on all levels of government, that we have an endless flow of guns. That is not the city our children should grow up in, and we need help.”
That message was echoed by Vanessa Gibson, the Bronx Borough President, who said:
“What is the message that we are sending our children? Our babies deserve to live. They don’t deserve to live in communities where they have to dodge bullets every single day.”
Johnny Shaw, a nearby resident, said that he could not even find the words to describe the grief and shock of an 11-month-old baby being shot. He said:
“I can’t even find the words, honestly, because that’s a baby. That’s a baby. The kids need a chance to survive.”
The New York Police Department has reported that they have not identified any suspects in this case yet but did note they believe the incident will be gang related.
They are asking anyone with any information to contact them so they can hold the person responsible for their actions. Persons with information can either contact the Bronx borough or contact the New York Police Department’s Crime Stoppers hotline at 800 577-8477.
The incident started when an unnamed New York Police Officer, a member of the six-man Public Safety Team, approached a group of alleged Crips gang members outside of an apartment building in the area of Lorillard Place near Third Avenue.
When the officer approached the group, described by police as disorderly, the officer ordered everyone to show their hands.
The reason why the officer ordered him to show his hands is for officer safety. Gang members are known to be armed and if the officer can see their hands and know there are not any weapons they are holding, the encounter will be safer.
When the officer told the group to show him his hands, one person, in particular, a 16-year-old, allegedly refused to do so. After repeated attempts to remove his hands from his pockets, the officer became concerned that the teenager was armed.
The officer attempted to remove the teenager’s hands from his pockets as the suspect began to struggle with him. Newly minted New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said:
“He [the suspect] began to physically struggle with the officers.”
At some point during the struggle, the teenager allegedly retrieve a firearm that was in his pocket and fired it once, shooting himself in the groin. The bullet traveled through the alleged gang member and struck the officer in his right leg. Commissioner Sewell added:
“At this point, there was a single round fired from the suspect’s firearm that struck the suspect in the left groin area and then exited the suspect and struck the officer in the right leg.”
Officers were able to get the situation under control and both the injured officer and the teen suspect were transported to St. Barnabas Hospital in their police vehicles. Both the officer and the suspect are expected to recover according to Commissioner Sewell.
Sewell informed the public that none of the New York Police Officers who were on the scene returned fire when the suspect pulled the trigger. She noted:
“At no time did any officer fire their weapons. Tonight is yet another example of how quickly incidents can escalate and how officers risk their lives to keep our city safe.”
Investigators combed through the scene and recovered the gun the alleged teen suspect fired. They noted that it was a .9mm Sig Sauer that had been reported stolen from York County, South Carolina on October 17, 2020.
This is the second time the alleged teen suspect has been arrested for having a firearm. New York Police Chief of Detectives James Essig reported that he had also been arrested when he was 14 when he was caught with a Taurus firearm. Essig said that the teen received probation in December of 2021 for the offense.
Democratic New York Mayor Eric Adams spoke about the shooting and said that it was “frustrating.” He said:
“This individual just was placed on probation for possession of a gun in December. January, he’s back in possession of a gun. Something is wrong with that.
“We are making tactical errors on preventing law enforcement communities from being able to rid our communities of guns. That’s unacceptable. There is a clear signal on the streets that it is alright to carry a gun in the city of New York.
“He was arrested at 14 years old for being in possession of a gun. At 16, he’s arrested again, and this time he discharged a gun. What is it going to take? What is it going to take before we finally realize we are endangering the lives of children by allowing children to carry guns that they are using on children?
“I am just frustrated with this. We are putting our communities in harm’s way, we are putting our police officers in harm’s way, and we don’t seem to get it.”
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