CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – Teenagers tied to several Charlotte-area high schools are suspects in the shooting death of a 3-year-old boy killed when nearly 150 rounds were fired toward a home in northwest Charlotte, according to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.
Authorities said nearly 150 rounds were fired toward a home on Richard Rozzelle Drive around 11:45 p.m. Tuesday.
3-year-old Asiah Figueroia was shot in the head and died, police and family members said. Police said Asiah’s four-year-old sister was also shot. She is expected to survive.
11 people were inside the house at the time of the shooting.
CMPD detectives said the suspects were students with ties Hopewell, Mecklenburg, Vance and Chambers high schools.
The deadly incident is also suspected to be related to other shootings, Captain Joel McNelly said at a news conference Wednesday, including a homicide on Trinity Road where a 14-year-old is accused of killing a 16-year-old.
Captain McNelly said police believe the shootings are also tied to houses shot into this week.
“How can you wake up this morning knowing your actions last night took the life of a 3-year-old? Who will never have the opportunity to grow up?” asked CMPD Chief Johnny Jennings in a message to the suspects. “It makes no sense that you can have such a disregard for human life and not hold yourself accountable.”
Authorities said violence among high school students can stem from simple disputes. They can develop dispute gangs which could turn violent.
Police told parents to speak to their teens to see if they have heard anything and to check if they were at home last night. They also encouraged parents to look through their teenagers’ rooms and phones for information.
The investigation is active and ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department at 704-432-TIPS to speak with a detective or call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.