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Three arrested after 3-year-old shot on Milwaukee's north side

Posted at 4:22 PM, Jul 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-05 19:12:52-04

Milwaukee police have arrested three people for shooting a 3-year-old girl Wednesday at 10:20 p.m.

Police said they have recovered six guns from the suspects. Criminal charges are expected to be filed in the coming days. 

Milwaukee police say the 3-year-old girl was hospitalized from a gunshot wound after shots were fired into a house Wednesday evening.

It happened around 10:20 p.m. near 48th & Fairmount.

Her father tells TODAY’S TMJ4 says at least four shots hit the back of his home while his wife was putting their kids to bed.  

"She was doing the usual ritual, singing the goodnight song, praying and making sure everyone had a good day," Eric Smith Sr. said. "She seen sparks."

One of the shots went through the back of the house and a couch,  hitting his little girl in the leg. She is expected to recover from her injuries.

"Everything happened so quick," Smith Sr. said. "My wife said she heard bullets going past her head and Symphony just jumped right on my wife. She wasn't sure where the bullet had hit her."

All morning, Smith Sr. was checking for bullet holes on the back of his home. He even found a bullet still lodged in the siding. It was a cruel reminder that now he shares something in common with his daughter. Smith Sr. was shot in the arm when he was 18.

"I was waiting until she got a little older to tell her about my experience," Smith Sr. said. "One of the most painful things to hear is my five-year-old say, my sister was shot. Then, [Symphony] says, I was shot. Who would ever think their child would utter those words in their home? A place where they're safe."

He says police told him they found upwards of 40 shell casings during their investigation at another home nearby.

The family says they've heard some gunshots near their home in the past, but never this close. Since it was the 4th of July, he says he feels lucky the family wasn't outside around 10 p.m. during the shooting.

He says he almost bought sparklers for the family to enjoy but decided against it. 

"If we were back here, there would have been no way for us to escape that," Smith said. "This is where they keep their toys and I can't believe this has happened to us."

He says, even though he works up to 80 hours a week, his family is struggling to afford the cost of moving to a safer neighborhood. 

"My wife doesn't feel safe here anymore," Smith Sr. said. "I don't blame her."