Sketch released in fatal infant shooting

June 5, 2011 5:25:24 PM PDT
A two-month-old infant was shot and killed early Sunday morning in East Palo Alto and police are hoping a reward will bring those responsible to justice.

A father, mother and their two young sons were leaving a baby shower at a house on Wisteria Drive in East Palo Alto around 1:00 a.m. Sunday when they were shot at by two men as they were driving away.

Both parents and their two-month-old infant were shot. The baby was killed.

Police don't know what the motive behind the shooting was or if the family and the suspects know each other, but investigators do believe the suspects intentionally shot at the family's car.

"It's pretty apparent, based upon the way the crime occurred and the evidence left behind, that the vehicle this family was traveling in was the target of the shooting," East Palo Alto Police Captain Jeff Liu said.

The family drove their bullet-ridden car nearly three miles until they finally came to a stop. The father was seated in the front of the car while the mother and their two sons were seated in the back. Police say the mother was shot in the backside as she attempted to shield the other two children by using her body.

"The baby was transported to the hospital," said Liu. "They did everything they could for the child but it was a non-treatable injury."

Police say the suspects ran off through the neighborhood after the shooting. Investigators dusted cars in the neighborhood for fingerprints.

Neighbors say the shooting was loud, indicative of a "big-sized gun." They heard as many as six shots earlier this morning, but many of them are just now learning who the targets and victims were.

"It's devastating," said neighbor Gustavo Leal who was making a bottle for his own baby when he saw one of the shooters run past his house.

"I was in my kitchen," Leal said. "I saw a car pass by. I heard shots so I looked out the window and the car was already passing by. I thought I saw somebody with a gun."

Police say they are not sparing any resources.

"Clearly, any shooting is a tragedy," said East Palo Alto Police Chief Ron Davis. "When it's a child -- especially a three-month-old child -- it strikes at the heart of our community."

At a press conference Sunday afternoon, police announced a $25,000 reward for information on the suspects involved. Police also released a sketch of one of the suspects involved in today's shooting. Police describe one of the suspects as a Latino male in his late teens to early 20s with a very thin build, 5'9" tall and weighing about 130 pounds.

A second sketch showing the other suspect is expected to be released at a later time.


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