TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A toddler is recovering after being shot in the leg Wednesday afternoon.
The incident happened around 12:30 p.m. in the 400 block of Hernandez Court in Tampa.
The 21-month-old was inside her family’s apartment when gunfire rang out at the front of the home.
Investigators believe the victim’s father, Eduardo Avila, 24, was the intended target of the gunfire. They say Avila was outside his apartment when he was approached by several men who made “threatening comments and/or gestures.”
Shortly after Avila entered his apartment, officials say more than a dozen shots were fired at the front door. One of the bullets went through the fdoor, ricocheted off a wall, and struck the little girl, according to the Tampa Police Department.
The 21-month-old was taken to a nearby hospital with injured that are not life-threatening. No one else inside the apartment was injured.
No arrests have been made. Police continue to investigate the shooting. They have not provided any suspect descriptions as of yet.
Dominique and Yolanda Pickett are related to the victim’s mother. “Children ain’t got nothing to do with this,” Dominique Pickett said. “Now, we got to rush out to the hospital because people won’t put their guns down.”
“Children don’t. They really don’t. Now my cousin has to deal with this. It’s just crazy,” Yolanda Pickett added.
Reva Inman is a neighbor and community activist. “Is it World War III? Is it? What is it coming to in the daylight now where people are coming out and shooting an innocent kid?” Inman asked.
“We just had a community meeting yesterday, and crime and safety were two of the issues we talked about. I just went to the board meeting this morning concerning other issues. I’ve brought this to the attention of the Tampa Housing Authority many times,” she said.
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