LOS ANGELES – In a shocking killing that may have been gang-related, authorities say at least one gunman fired shots into a California home, killing a 1-year-old infant who was in her crib.
Autumn Johnson, who had just celebrated her first birthday, was fatally struck in the head around 7 p.m. along the 300 block of North Holly Avenue in Compton, according the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.
A witness told the Los Angeles Times that she heard screaming and then saw a man she believed to be the girl's father walk out of the garage with the child's limp body in his arms. "Someone take my baby to the hospital," the sobbing man said, according to the witness.
"My innocent baby got shot for nothing. She was sitting, just standing in her crib, and out of nowhere, gunshots,” Blanche Wandick told KTLA. “I miss my baby, I love my baby, but she’s gone, and I appreciate anybody who’s helping and trying to find who did it.”
Sheriff's Lt. John Corrina said he believes the shooting may have been gang-related.
“It looks like they targeted a person, and they didn’t shoot the house, they shot into the garage. So they were obviously targeting whoever’s living in the garage," Corrina said.
Officials confirmed that Johnson and her parents had been living in the garage, which
Corrina added that he didn't think the baby was targeted. The bullet struck her just above the left eye, her great uncle Cornell Patton told reporters.
“She was 1 years old. Innocent. An innocent little girl lost her life yesterday over some foolishness," Patton said. “If black lives matter, man, let’s make it matter then. A little girl just got killed.”
Police are looking for two suspects in the fatal shooting. Witnesses described them as two black males last seen in a dark-colored, four-door sedan.
Anyone with information about the deadly shooting was encouraged to contact the Sheriff Department's Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500.
Anonymous tips can also be left by calling Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477, texting the letters TIPLA plus a tip to 274637, or by using the websitehttp://lacrimestoppers.org.