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Hamilton home where boy, 7, was shot was targeted by gunman, police say
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Friday, January 24, 2020 6:51AM EST
Last Updated Friday, January 24, 2020 1:08PM EST
Police say they believe the Hamilton home where a seven-year-old boy was shot on Thursday night was targeted by the gunman but it is too early to say who the shooter intended to hit.
According to police, at around 8 p.m., a suspect entered the backyard of a house on Gordon Street, located near Barton Street East and Gage Avenue North, and fired shots into the residence.
A seven-year-old boy, who was inside the home at the time, was struck by at least one bullet that came through a first-floor window, police say.
The boy was rushed to hospital with life-threatening injuries but police now say he is expected to survive.
The gunman, police say, fled the scene in a waiting vehicle, which has been described as a light-coloured, four-door sedan.
“The nature of how the incident unfolded leads us to believe that this residence in particular was targeted. The child himself was not a target of this shooting,” Det.-Sgt. Jim Callender said during a news conference on Friday morning.
“We are working to determine which of the occupants inside the home was the intended target.”
Callender noted that three adults and two children were inside the home on Thursday night and the occupants are currently being interviewed by police.
The detective said a mother and two children live at the residence full-time but visitors are known to stay at the home on occasion.
“Some individuals that were inside of that house were known to the police service,” Callender said. “That’s why I’m comfortable to say that this particular residence itself was a target.”
'He just kept asking me if he was going to die,' neighbour says
Speaking to CP24 on Friday morning, a neighbour said he was sitting at his computer on Thursday night when he heard two gunshots ring out.
He said when he went outside, he heard a woman yelling inside a nearby home.
“I walked through the front door and her son was laying on the floor at the end of the hallway. He had two gunshot wounds, one to the lower left abdomen and one to the left hand,” the neighbour said.
“I wrapped his left hand, put pressure on the abdomen. He said it hurt and he couldn’t breathe so I sat him up a little bit and he said that was better. He just kept asking me if he was going to die.”
The identity of the victim has not been publicly released but one neighbour told CP24 that the boy attends the same school as his children.
“(He’s) just a sweet little boy,” the neighbour said. "Nobody deserves to have that done but especially not a child.”
Police urge suspects to surrender
Callender said these type of investigations really hit home for the officers involved.
“These are the ones that they are truly innocent victims,” Callender said. “The child had nothing to do with this and they were brought into a situation that they had no control over.”
He said investigators have “lots of video evidence” from the neighbourhood and urged the suspects involved to surrender.
“Speak with a lawyer and come into the police station and talk to the police,” he said.
Deputy police chief Frank Bergen told reporters Thursday that the boy is the city’s first shooting victim of the year.
"This is unacceptable," Bergen said. “This is a time when our community has to stop and understand what the proliferation of guns are doing in our community.”