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Police hoping to close in on suspect in Brooklyn child shooting

September 2, 2013 8:29:25 PM PDT
The search continues for a suspect who shot and killed a little baby who was being pushed in a stroller by his parents on Bristol Street in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn.

The intended target was the boy's father who was identified as Anthony Hennis, a known gang member and has over 20 arrests, and police say they are close to arresting the suspect.

Outside the family home, a make shift memorial to remember a little Antiq Hennis, a one year old gunned down on the street while being pushed in a stroller by his mother and father.

It appears the bullets were meant for the toddlers dad but instead the child was shot in the head. The shooting has shaken many in the community who are trying to come to grips with the senseless death of a one year child.

While family members grieve community organizers are trying to help them deal with their agony.

"It is unfortunate that we find ourselves together again at the senseless death of one of our children," said Mayoral candidate Bill Thompson.

Witnesses say the gunman fired at least four shots.

The father is described as a person with a troubled past. But family members say he loved his little boy.

Antiq Hennis had just started walking and celebrated his 1st birthday in the spring.

This is the 16th shooting of children under 16 in the city since mid May.

Another child was also shot in the head in Brooklyn on August 24th.

All this gun violence has city leaders searching for the right answers.

"This is a tragedy for his parents, the family and the entire community and city. Every child in our city is precious and every child deserves our protection," said Mayor Bloomberg.

The NYPD says $12,000 is being offered for tips leading to arrest of gunman in fatal shooting of the 16-month-old. If you have any info, call 800-577-TIPS. All calls are anonymous.

As of Aug. 25, killings and shootings were down about 26 percent compared to the same time last year, according to the mayor's office.

In the police precinct that includes Brownsville, a struggling section of central Brooklyn, there had been seven killings this year, half as many as during the same period in 2012. The poverty rate in Brownsville is about twice the citywide rate, according to a 2012 analysis of government data by New York University's Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy.

Bishop Willie Billips of the Church of Faith, Hope and Charity, who knows the boy's father, told newspapers that he drove the parents to the hospital to identify the body of their only child.

"I'm furious about what I've just seen. I'm outraged," Billips told the Daily News. "A 1-year-old baby lying on the bed? It's horrible."

It was at least the second case of a toddler being shot to death in a stroller this year.

In March, a woman walking home from a post office in Brunswick, Ga., with her 13-month-old son was accosted by a gunman who demanded her purse, then shot her in the leg and fired a shot at the child in his stroller after she told him she had no money, authorities said.

An 18-year-old man was convicted Friday of murder in the death of Antonio Santiago despite his attorney's attempts to cast guilt upon several others, including the child's parents.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)


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