Crime Stoppers raised a $3,500 reward to $10,000 for help identifying a man who allegedly fired the shot that hit an infant in the Bedford Park section of the Bronx.
On Wednesday, Jan. 19, a baby girl named Catherine was caught in the crossfire of an alleged gun fight between two men, just a couple of days before her first birthday, according to police. A man was allegedly chasing another man before firing two shots, of which one hit the baby in the face.
Law enforcement sources said the baby girl was in the backseat of her 32-year-old mother’s parked car on 198th Street and Valentine Avenue, within the 52nd Precinct, at 6:48 p.m. A bullet penetrated the back window, hitting the infant’s left cheek, authorities said.
The father was stopping in a nearby drugstore, and came outside to his wife screaming, clutching the baby, whose pink coat was stained with blood, Mayor Eric Adams said at a press conference that night. Adams posted a photo on Twitter that shows the blood-stained coat left on the scene.
An 11-month-old baby shot in the Bronx. If that’s not a wake up call, I don’t know what is. It should be unimaginable that this would happen in our city.
But it did.
Leaders at every level have abandoned city streets. I won’t.
I refuse to surrender New York City to violence. pic.twitter.com/uHFOi4Ixvh
— Mayor Eric Adams (@NYCMayor) January 20, 2022
“It doesn’t matter to me if it’s a police officer shot or if it’s a baby shot,” Adams said. “I’m going to stay in these streets until this city is safe. I’m not going to surrender this city to violence.”
The baby was transported to St. Barnabas Hospital before being transferred to Weill Cornell Medical Center in critical but stable condition, according to police. A police spokesman told the Bronx Times Thursday her condition remains the same.
“This is not the city our children should grow up in,” Adams said. “And we need help. We need help from Albany, we need help from our district attorneys, and we need help to make sure we don’t continue to put young people in the pathway of violence.”
President Joe Biden is meeting with Adams next week to discuss gun violence in New York City.
Elected officials and local activists gathered for a vigil at the scene of the incident on Friday, Jan. 21, two days after the shooting, on the baby girl’s birthday.
“We are declaring war on those who choose to engage in violence in this borough,” Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson said at the vigil.
A GoFundMe has raised more than $30,000 to help pay for baby Catherine’s medical bills.
Police said the suspect has a medium build and was last seen wearing a face mask, dark-colored hooded sweatshirt with a white Nike logo on the front, gray sweatpants and black and white sneakers. He allegedly fled the scene driving a grey 4-door sedan, pictured in surveillance video.
An NYPD spokesman said on Tuesday morning there are no updates on the active investigation.
Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the CrimeStoppers website at https://crimestoppers.nypdonline.org/ or on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls are strictly confidential.