Two-year-old shot in chest, dad arrested

July 18, 2008 11:43:50 AM PDT
A Gilroy father is under arrest and being questioned by detectives after his two-year old son got shot in the chest.

The father dropped the boy off at St. Louise Hospital on Thursday - claiming a rival gang member shot his son, on the 9,000 block of Kern Avenue, where they live.

The two-year-old boy is recuperating in a San Jose hospital after surgery. He's in critical but stable condition.

Neighbors say police officers knocked on their doors Thursday looking for information on the shooting. One neighbor said she complained to police several times over the past year about loud arguments. Friday morning, the father is facing serious criminal charges and serious questions about what happened at his home that led to his two-year-old boy being shot in the chest.

Workers at the Saint Louise Regional Hospital in Gilroy knew something was strange when a man dropped off a two-year-old boy with a gunshot wound to his chest and walked out.

"Particularly with children, it always seems to pull at your heartstrings," said Sgt. Joseph Deras, Gilroy police department.

Officers used the description of the man and vehicle given by hospital workers to arrest known gang member 28-year-old Michael Guajardo. Investigators say he is the father of the two-year-old boy. He told officers a rival gang member knocked on the door of his Kern Avenue home in Gilroy Thursday afternoon and a fight ensued.

"The rival gang member produced a fire arm and the firearm was discharged during the melee and the baby was hit by a single bullet," said Sgt. Deras.

That is the story Guajardo told police, but officers aren't sure if it's what really happened. Guajardo provided little information on the alleged shooter.

"Those kinds of things lead us to suspect that there might be a little bit more to the story or certainly important pieces are being left out intentionally," said Sgt. Deras.

Guajardo was arrested for a parole violation and felony child endangerment.

Once the boy recovers, he is expected to be interviewed by police. Investigators are hoping the child can give a more accurate account of what really happened inside the home.


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