MERIDEN, Conn. (CBS 2) — A popular teenager from Meriden, Conn., is being mourned Monday after he was gunned down in the Bronx in what police believe was a gang initiation.
Tashawn Bromfield, 16, was visiting his father in Eastchester on Saturday when he was shot in the chest as he stood outside an apartment building courtyard drinking a Slurpee.
“I did hear gunshots,” said Eastchester resident Kala Williams. “But I thought it was firecrackers at first.”
Police say an SUV rounded the corner on Fenton Ave. and an unidentified gunman fired at least two shots from the passenger side window. Bromfield was pronounced dead at Jacobi Medical Center. Investigators say it was a case of mistaken identity.
Authorities obtained video from a nearby security camera showing the car speeding away from the scene.
“They took something so remarkable away from us,” said Danielle Tavallo, a friend of Bromfield’s. “But he’s never going to be gone.”
Grief counselors were available to students Monday at Maloney High School in Meriden, were Bromfield was eager to get back to class on August 30th and play football. His death comes as a painful shock to his friends and coaches.
“Kids loved him, he got along well with everybody,” said Bob Zito, football coach. “It’s a big piece of our hearts torn out.”
“I loved him so much,” said Karim St. Luce, a friend. “I don’t understand what somebody would do this to him.”
Bromfield’s mother believes he was shot during a gang initiation. She said her son was looking forward to playing wide receiver this upcoming football season. His team hopes to win the state championship in memory of him.
Police are asking that anyone with information about the shooting come forward.
So far, no arrests have been made.