NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — On the same day police nabbed two men who might have been behind the fatal shooting of a 16-month-old Brooklyn boy last weekend, family members and friends bid an emotional goodbye to Antiq Hennis on Friday.
Two men were taken into custody in Pennsylvania in the morning in connection with the Brownsville toddler’s killing.
Officials confirmed that Daquan Breland, 23, and Daquan Wright, 19 — both of Brooklyn — were picked up at 6:30 a.m. at the Sherman Hills housing complex in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.
Wright’s sister lives in Wilkes-Barre, WCBS 880’s Jim Smith reported. They were found in an apartment near hers, NYPD Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said.
“Investigators breached the door to gain entry,” Kelly said. “In the rear bedroom, they found Daquan Breland on the floor and Daquan Wright laying on the bed.
“At least one eyewitness from the tragic shooting has identified Daquan Breland as the shooter and told police that Wright had handed the gun to Breland, who then pulled the trigger,” Kelly added.
The men were being questioned and had not been charged as of Friday night in the boy’s death. Breland and Wright, however, were charged as fugitives of justice because there were warrants out for their arrests, CBS 2’s Weijia Jiang reported. The men waived their extradition hearings and were to be brought back to New York City.
Breland and Wright both have prior firearms convictions, officials said.
Investigators were able to track the men down with help from the Brownsville community, sources said.
“I am happy and relieved that they got these guys, if they got the right guys,” Brownsville resident Victor Santiago said. “It’s sad that the kids can’t play in the streets.”
Added community activist Tony Herbert: “If they are the shooters, we are asking that the Brooklyn district attorney prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law for killing a baby in our community that didn’t have a chance to live.”
Antiq Hennis was gunned down Sunday evening as his father, Anthony Hennis, 22, pushed him in a stroller. The toddler was struck in the head by a bullet on Livonia Avenue at Bristol Street, about a block from his home, police said. The boy was pronounced dead after being rushed to Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center.
Antiq’s father was taking the toddler to visit his grandparents at the time of the shooting, Kelly said. Four bullets were fired; two struck the stroller.
Police sources told CBS 2 they believe the hit was in retaliation for an earlier dispute with a rival gang.
“Little boys playing with guns, that want to be men. They’re not men. They’re little boys. Men don’t shoot babies. May they rot in hell,” said Yvette Telfair-Clay, the victim’s godmother.
Anthony Hennis has refused to be interviewed by police, said Kelly, who admitted that he is concerned about the possibility of retaliatory shooting.
Mourners who attended the toddler’s funeral Friday at the Grace Funeral Home in Brownsville told CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez that Antiq was laid to rest wearing all white and a white Yankees baseball cap. Many of those who attended the service also wore white to symbolize the boy’s innocence.
“You come out, and you see that,” said mourner Ralph Kokason. “You stand there, and you see the little boy laying there, you’re going to feel emotional. A little boy who haven’t even got a chance to enjoy his life.”
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