An 11-month-old girl, just days away from her first birthday, was shot in the face while sitting in a car with his mother in the Bronx, a senior NYPD official told NBC New York.
The shooting occurred on Valentine Avenue near East 198th Street in the Bedford Park neighborhood around 6:45 p.m. Wednesday, senior police officials said. Two men were seen on surveillance video racing down the street just before the shooting, when on pulls out a gun and fires.
The child and mother were sitting in a car, with the child's father in the corner deli, when a stray bullet was fired into the car, striking the infant in the left cheek, according a senior police official. A blood-stained pink baby jacket could be seen left in the street, as witnesses said it was ripped off in the panic after the gunfire.
"The officers found a mother holding her 11-month-old baby girl who suffered a gunshot wound to her left cheek. The officers immediately escorted the mother, the child and the ambulance to St. Barnabas Hospital," said Deputy Chief Timothy McCormack.
The child was initially taken to St. Barnabas Hospital in serious condition, but was transferred to Columbia Presbyterian as the condition may have worsened, law enforcement sources told NBC New York.
The child was listed in critical but stable condition, a senior police official said.
"Doesn't matter to me if it was a police officer shot, or if it's a baby shot, I'm going to stay in these streets until this city is safe," Mayor Eric Adams said at a press conference at the scene later in the evening, pledging to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.
One suspect, described as wearing all black, fled the scene, heading west on East 198th Street, two senior NYPD officials said. Police are searching for both of the men seen on the surveillance video.
A shell casing was recovered at the scene. An investigation is ongoing.