Police investigating the death of a 1-year-old boy who was shot in his stroller during a walk on a city street believe his father was the intended target, Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Monday.
Authorities have some leads in the killing of Antiq Hennis in Brooklyn on Sunday night and believe his death may be gang-related, Kelly said.
Antiq’s father, Anthony Hennis, had just gone to pick up the boy and take him to visit Hennis’ grandmother, Kelly said. Hennis, 21, put the boy in the stroller and was pushing him across a street in the Brownsville neighborhood when shots rang out at about 7:20 p.m., police said.
Grief and outrage over the toddler’s shooting loomed over the annual West Indian Day Parade about a mile and a half away, where Mayor Michael Bloomberg called the killing “a tragedy for his family, for this community, for the entire city” and political candidates talked about gun violence.
Four shots were fired, and one hit the boy in the left side of his head; he was declared dead on arrival at the hospital. The gunfire left four .45-caliber shell casings on the corner and bullet holes in the stroller, Kelly told reporters before the parade.
“We have some leads, and those leads are being aggressively followed,” the commissioner said. He said the baby’s father isn’t cooperating with police and has a criminal record but didn’t elaborate.
While killings hit a record low in the city last year and are on track to drop further this year, “we know that is cold comfort to any grieving parent or friends,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said before the parade.
Brownsville is a struggling section of central Brooklyn, with a poverty rate about twice the citywide rate, according to a 2012 analysis of government data by New York University’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy.
It was at least the second case of a toddler being shot to death in a stroller this year.