A 22-year-old man faces charges in connection with the shooting of 3-year-old child, who remains in critical condition after being shot in the head in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn early Saturday morning. NY1's Magee Hickey filed the following report.
Little Tharell Edward has suffered more in his three short years than anyone should ever have to.
At 3:30 a.m. Saturday morning, while in the care of his babysitter, police say an argument broke out in a Flatbush apartment on East 21st Street, and the 3-year-old boy was shot in the head as he lay in his crib.
The boy was rushed to the hospital, where he is fighting for his life.
According to officials, 22-year-old Akeem Bernard faces assault and weapons charges in connection with the shooting.
Officials say Bernard, who is also accused of tampering with evidence, has been arraigned, and a judge set bond at $75,000.
"My heart goes out for Terrell, because that's a little boy that I'm accustomed to seeing all the time running around very happy," said family friend Natasha Fleming. "I know his mother's very negligent, but he doesn't half of what he's been going through for a 3-year-old child."
Neighbors in the East 21st Street building say even though the mother wasn't home at the time of the shooting, she should be held accountable.
"I would blame the mother, because when you have a kid, you have to take care of your kid," said family friend Janette Fleming. "You shouldn't have anybody inside, regardless of who it is, what time it is. Where was she? Where is she? Right, I would blame the mother, because of the company that you keep, then you know. You're supposed to know what company to keep, and what they have, and what they don't have in your house."
Just two months ago, neighbors say little Tharell was bitten by his mother's own pitbull.
He had to use a colostomy bag for several weeks.
While neighbors don't know what led up to the early morning shooting, everyone is hoping the happy little boy pulls through.
"He doesn't deserve half the stuff he goes through, and he's like too young for that, and he deserves better," said Rea Flemin, another family friend. "I really wish he'll come home."
The administration for children's services is investigating the pitbull attack, and says it hopes the boy makes a full recovery.