MILWAUKEE -- Neighbors are waiting to learn the condition of the three-year-old boy rushed to Children’s Hospital with a serious gunshot wound Wednesday night. He underwent emergency surgery.
“I’m just praying he recovers from this,” said Ina Howard. “It should never happen. I’m praying for our city as a whole, there’s just too much going on for no reason. These kids don’t need to live like this.”
“Every day we wake up and there’s a shooting somewhere,” said Maloyd Moore. “Now it’s getting to our children. It’s unacceptable.”
Milwaukee Police were called to a home on 17th Street, between Concordia and Keefe Wednesday night around 8:50 p.m. When they arrived they found the boy had been shot.
They took a 26-year-old woman into custody. Investigators are not revealing that woman’s relation to the three-year-old, or exactly what happened. But they did share a public plea “to keep firearms out of the presence of children.”
This is the 15th child injured in a shooting in Milwaukee so far this year.
Less than 24 hours later, just a mile and a half from where the child was shot, community members and leaders gathered for a rally to end gun violence.
“We know there are guns in our city, so the more we can make sure that families know how to store them safely, the better,” said Reggie Moore, the Director of Milwaukee’s Office of Violence Prevention. “We want to make sure they have access to free gun locks. We need to ensure that guns don’t end up in the hands of anyone that shouldn’t have them, especially children.”
Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes attended the rally. He grew up nearby and says the state legislature needs to start taking action.
"We see instances like this three-year-old shot, or other children falling victim to gun violence,” he said. “It’s time for our legislators to start paying attention to the well being of children all across the state of Wisconsin, in every zip code, in every community. That’s not what’s happening. In a very real way children are being disregarded in our community.”
Moore did point out that the number of homicides and non-fatal shootings in Milwaukee are down compared to this time last year.
“Making change really is a community effort,” Moore said. “Every one has to get involved.”