NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The suspected gunman arrested in the shooting death of a 1-year-old boy in Brooklyn was charged with murder Saturday.
As CBS 2’s Janelle Burrell reported, the suspect and a second man were arrested on Friday in Pennsylvania in connection with the slaying of Antiq Hennis last Sunday in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn. The two suspects were returned to New York Saturday to be placed in a lineup.
Officials confirmed that Daquan Breland, 23, and Daquan Wright, 19 — both of Brooklyn — were picked up at 6:30 a.m. Friday at the Sherman Hills housing complex in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported. Wright’s sister lives in the development.
“One eyewitness to the tragic shooting on Sunday has ID’d Daquan Breland as the shooter, and told police that Daquan Wright handed the gun to Breland, who then pulled the trigger,” police Commissioner Ray Kelly said Friday.
Breland, of Brooklyn, was charged with second-degree murder and criminal possession of a weapon Saturday, the NYPD said. Later on Saturday Wright was also charged with criminal possession of a weapon.
Wright was expected to face a Brooklyn judge on Saturday night.
Breland was arraigned Saturday afternoon. He pleaded not guilty and was being held without bail. Prosecutors did not expect either suspect to be granted bail, CBS 2’s Dave Carlin reported.
A police complaint also mentioned other suspects who were unapprehended and unnamed who were in a car, CBS 2’s Carlin reported on Saturday night.
The capture of the suspects came on the same day that family and friends bid an emotional farewell to the 16-month-old boy. His image lying in repose was one that friends and family members will not soon forget.
“He was a big boy. He was a very handsome big boy — like he was just sleeping,” said Yvette Telfair-Clay, Antiq’s godmother said.
The toddler was dressed in white as he lay in the tiny casket. Hundreds joined his family at the Grace Funeral Chapel in Brooklyn.
“You come out and you see there, and you stand there, and you see a little boy laying there, you’re gonna feel emotional,” said mourner Ralph Kokason. “You know, a little boy that hadn’t even gotten the chance to enjoy his life.”
Hennis was shot and killed Sunday evening as his father – Anthony Hennis, 22, a reputed gang member – was pushing him in his 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 said the elder Hennis was the intended target. They believe the shooting was in retaliation for an earlier dispute with a rival gang.
Community leaders and their family were demanding justice for the little boy taken far too soon.
“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.
“If they are the shooters, we’re asking that the Brooklyn District Attorney prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law,” said activist Tony Herbert.
Just blocks away from the scene of the murder a lonely few demonstrators marched to push back against a seemingly endless wave of violence, CBS 2’s Steve Langford reported.
“I lost my son but I have three other children and there’s so many other children in our community. We can’t give up. I refuse to give up,” the mother of a slain teenager said.
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