YONKERS — The child struck by gunfire in Yonkers Thursday night was inside of his home and opening the door for a family member, according to police.
The 6-year-old boy was hit by the stray bullet just after 6 p.m., with the shots allegedly fired by teenagers in the area.
Three teenagers were arrested, police said. Two of the teens had handguns and began firing at two intended targets that were exiting a livery cab; those two people were not shot, but the 6-year-old boy was.
The teens tried to ditch the guns as the fled from police, but both illegal handguns were recovered, authorities said.
The alleged shooters, a 17-year-old male and 15-year-old male, both of Yonkers, were arrested and charged with attempted murder and assault, among other charges; a third teenager, 16, of Yonkers, was charged with hindering prosecution and criminal possession of a firearm.
The teens were arraigned in court Friday. The 17-year-old and 15-year-old were remanded into custody at a juvenile detention facility, while the 16-year-old was released to the custody of a parent/legal guardian, according to officials.
Police said the motive seems to be continued “escalation of disputes and group violence involving juveniles and young adults.”
The identities of the suspects and victim are being withheld due to their ages, police said.
“Thanks to the swift action of our Yonkers Police and Fire Departments, a child’s life was spared from senseless violence,” said Mayor Mike Spano. “I commend our men in blue for apprehending the suspects, juveniles themselves, soon after the incident. The safety and well-being of our residents is paramount, and we will continue to engage the necessary policing measures to curb any further crime and violence so tragic events like this do not happen again.”
The police commissioner echoed the mayor’s sentiments in a statement.
“No parent should ever have to experience the horror of having a young child harmed in this way, due to the unbelievably violent and reckless actions of a few,” Police Commissioner John Mueller said. “I thank God that the victim is in stable condition and hope for his full recovery; I also thank the amazing men and women of this Department for their extraordinary efforts in apprehending these perpetrators in short order and removing two more illegal handguns from our streets.”