A 10-year-old boy was shot and killed Saturday night when an unknown shooter fired numerous rounds at a home in the Far Rockaway neighborhood of Queens, according to the New York Police Department.
Police said they responded to a call of “persons shot” at around 9:33 p.m. and found 10-year-old Justin Wallace “unconscious and unresponsive with a gunshot wound to his torso,” a news release states. Justin didn’t live at the home where he was shot, a police spokesperson said.
He was taken to St. John’s Episcopal Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.
Another 29-year-old male also suffered a gunshot wound to his shoulder and was brought to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in stable condition, the release states.
The NYPD released surveillance video Sunday that shows a person approach the house, point a gun through a stair railing, shoot about eight rounds at the house, and then flee. The police asked the public for help in identifying the suspect in connection to the Queens shooting.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted about the shooting on Sunday, calling it “a coward’s act.”
“He had his entire life ahead of him. It’s a profound injustice. His killer will be brought to justice,” de Blasio said.
The mayor also posted several photos of his meeting with the family on Sunday, and noted that Justin was set to turn 11 in a few days. The family showed photos of Justin and told stories about his short life, he said during a news conference Monday.
“It was just the most painful thing. It was just horrible,” he said.
The killing comes amid a marked rise in gun violence across the country dating to last spring, including in New York City. So far in 2021, there have been 564 shooting incidents in the city, more than double the number at this point two years ago, according to NYPD data. In addition, overall crime complaints during the month of May were 23 percent higher than last May, the data shows.
The police data indicates this year’s gun violence is a fraction of the high levels of the 1990s, and overall crime complaints at this point in the year are down about 2 percent compared to this point in 2020. Still, the rising gun violence has sparked fear of a broader crime surge and taken on a renewed importance in the upcoming mayor’s race.
The CNN Wire contributed to this report
NTD staff contributed to this report