3 teens arrested after shooting wounds 4-year-old, teen

Girl, 4, and boy, 17, sustained non-life-threatening injuries in shooting

Grand Rapids, Bridge Street NW, perimeter, shooting suspect
Grand Rapids police set up a perimeter in the area of Bridge Street NW as they seek a shooting suspect. (June 30, 2016)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Three teens were arrested Thursday night in connection to a shooting earlier in the day that wounded a 4-year-old girl and a 17-year-old boy, Grand Rapids police say.

The shooting happened around 3 p.m. on Leonard Street NE near Houseman Avenue. The Grand Rapids Police Department said shots were fired from a dark-colored SUV at the 17-year-old, who was riding a bicycle. He was shot in the arm.

Another bullet grazed the right knee of a 4-year-old who was walking with her mother, grandmother and two sisters. She was an innocent bystander, GRPD said.

“Suddenly they heard shots and one of the kids was screaming,” the girl’s father, Sherif Fahim, said. “So it could’ve hit any one of them.”

The victims’ injuries are not considered life-threatening, according to GRPD Sgt. Terry Dixon. The 4-year-old had already been released from the hospital by Thursday evening, her father said.

“Overwhelmed, but in the same time I’m grateful to the Lord that she’s safe,” Fahim said. “God is so kind to us. God is so good. She’s safe.”

Around 6:15 p.m., someone reported a stolen vehicle in the area of Chatham Street NW and Pine Avenue, about 2.5 miles from the scene of the shooting. The vehicle description was a close match to the one involved in the shooting. Police say that when officers approached, two of the people in the vehicle took off. A third was arrested at the scene.

The two other suspects holed up inside a residence a few blocks away near the intersection of Bridge Street NW and Pine. One of them gave up after about three hours, and the second surrendered about an hour later, around 10 p.m.

The three suspects include two 16-year-olds and a 17-year-old, Grand Rapids police say.

Police didn’t immediately know the reason behind the shooting, but said it’s probable that the 17-year-old victim knew the suspects.

“This is just one of those random situations,” Dixon said. “We really don’t know exactly why this incident took place.”

Residents said the sound of gunshots is unusual in their neighborhood, in which there are many homes and apartments, as well as Vitale’s restaurant and a Family Fare grocery store.

“A 4-year-old shot, that’s terrible,” neighbor Kathryn Jones said. “My son walks the dog out here every day and my girls play the backyard and so it’s terrifying.”

Anyone with information is asked to call GRPD at 616.456.3400 or Silent Observer at 616.774.2345.

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