NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police on Monday continued their search for at least three suspects in the shooting death of a 16-year-old boy in Brooklyn.
It happened Sunday afternoon in East New York, where witnesses say 16-year-old Justin Richey was involved in some kind of dispute outside a bodega near Fountain and Blake Avenues. New surveillance video shows a group of men fighting when a few minutes later, a police say a man pulled out a gun and shot Richey multiple times.
The teen than ran across the street where he collapsed near Blake Avenue and Pine Street. When officers arrived, police said they found Richey with multiple gunshot wounds to the torso.
“He’s trying to run and he collapsed,” Asm Aladdin said. “My kids every day come out and want to play but now, from yesterday, they don’t want to come outside the house. We are very scared.”
Richey was taken to Brookdale Hospital, where he was pronounced dead only a day after he celebrated his 16th birthday. A community advocate was at the scene Monday calling for change.
“It’s just a tragedy and it has to stop. We have to find a way to figure out some solution to get these guns out of these kid’s hands,” Michael Thomas said.
The teen, who was known by his friends as Richey, was described as a funny guy. They say he worked odd jobs, anything from yard work to cleaning, just to help his mom and siblings. Police sources say he had no criminal history, but the men he had an argument with before the shooting are believed to be members of a local gang.
“The reason he was working so hard was to take care of his family,” said friend Decory Peele. “He would clean up, walk dogs — he just did anything anybody asked him.”
Tears were followed by cries for justice Monday night. A peaceful march started at the spot where he was shot and continued through the park where he spent his birthday at a community basketball tournament. His younger sister says he was one of 10 siblings, and had just graduated high school.
“It could have been somebody who was jealous of him,” sister Kendra Boyette said. “He loves helping everybody. Everyone loves him.”
The NYPD added that the alleged shooter was last seen in a red t-shirt and grey sweatpants. Police have increased patrols in the area to prevent retaliation as the investigation continues.
Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74682). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.