9-year-old shot in Tuscaloosa, treated for non-life threatening injuries

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) – Investigators are searching for the shooter that put a 9-year-old child in the hospital, Monday evening. It happened near the basketball court at the Hay Court Public Housing Authority just after 9:00 pm. The child was visiting from Birmingham, and was playing at the basketball court with his 17-year-old cousin.

Investigators say there were several other people hanging around the area when a 26-year-old man approached the teenager.

The 26-year-old man’s brother, who was not at the scene, has been in an on-going dispute with the 17-year-old, according to investigators. The teenager became fearful and tried to run. When his 9-year-old cousin tried to follow, the child was hit by gunfire in the left torso and arm.

“In a lot of these cases, you have these, let’s meet up here and we’ll settle this,” explains Metro Homicide Commander, Dale Phillips. “This was not an arranged meeting that we have been able to uncover.  It’s just that they happened to cross paths there.”

According to eyewitnesses, the child was shot while running along a path in-between several homes. Investigators have no reason to believe that he was the intended target, or even that there was an intended target. The child made it into a relative’s apartment, where the relative called for medical assistance. He was transported to Children’s Hospital in Birmingham with non-life threatening injuries.

At this time, neither the 17-year-old or the victim have been able to identify the shooter. Investigators are certain that whoever pulled the trigger was on the basketball court at the time.

“Based on what the individuals have told us, there’s going to be discrepancies,” says Phillips.  “There’s no way around it.  The story’s don’t match up, so somebody is not telling the truth.”

Copyright 2014 WIAT 42 News

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