UPDATED: 2 Teens Charged In Shooting Of 1-Year-Old Girl
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Updated 08/24/11 – 10:08 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) — Two teenagers have been charged with a shooting that left a 1-year-old girl injured in the South Chicago neighborhood.
Gary Moore and Fredrick Dean, both 16, were charged as adults with two counts each of attempted murder and one count each of aggravated battery with a firearm, according to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office.
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The girl, Melanie Jasa, was shot in the head on Tuesday while she was with her aunt, who was walking the family dog.
Separately, the mother of the alleged target of the shooting, a man in his late 20s who was riding a bicycle near the little girl, was arrested about 5 p.m. Tuesday and charged with a misdemeanor for fighting with neighbors, according to a police source.
The child was with her 15-year-old aunt while the aunt walked the family’s dog at about 8:11 a.m. when two gunmen between the ages of 16 and 19 opened fire at the man riding the bicycle, police said. The bicyclist fled, as did the shooters, police said.
The aunt fell to the ground with the baby in an effort to protect the infant.
The girl was taken to Advocate Trinity Hospital initially then transferred to Children’s Memorial Hospital, where she underwent surgery, police said.
The shooting happened around the corner from the infant’s home, and a trail of blood led from the site of the shooting back to the home before rain washed it away.
The baby’s mother is a Chicago Public Schools senior, a neighbor said.
The teen lives with her sister, two brothers, their parents and the infant in a garden apartment of a home on the 8300 block of South Muskegon.
One neighbor said the shooters, and the man on the bike they were aiming at, are from the neighborhood. It was a gang dispute, the neighbor said.
“I heard him talking to police. He said he was as shocked to see the two gunmen as they were him. They started shooting and he pedaled off as fast he could trying to zig-zag to avoid the shots,” said the neighbor.
Another neighbor, Sharita Johnson, said her boyfriend was walking her 5-year-old son, Darryl, to school when shots rang out.
“As soon as I left out the door, I heard, like, six shots, like, ‘Bam, bam, bam!,’” Johnson told CBS 2, “and I looked out the window, I was so afraid, I ran out of the house, and I grabbed my baby, and I was like, ‘Thank God. Thank God.’ He was so shaken up.”
Several neighbors said shootings in the area have increased in the last two years and the sound of gunfire is not uncommon.
Just a few blocks away last year, Chicago Police Officer Michael Flisk and former Chicago Housing Authority police Officer Stephen Peters were shot and killed in the alley behind the 8100 block of South Burnham Avenue. Flisk, an evidence technician, was processing the scene after Peters’ car had been broken into in his garage.
Convicted armed robber Timothy Herring Jr. was later charged with that crime.
The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.