3-year-old boy fatally shot on Detroit's east side

Police name mother's boyfriend person of interest

A 3-year-old was shot on Detroit's east side. (WDIV)
A 3-year-old was shot on Detroit's east side. (WDIV)

DETROIT – A 3-year-old boy has died after being shot Wednesday on Detroit's east side, police said.

Police said the incident happened around 7 p.m. Wednesday in the 11700 block of Rossiter Street, near Morang Avenue. The 3-year-old was taken to St. John Hospital and pronounced dead, officials said.

Mother's boyfriend named person of interest

Assistant Detroit Police Chief Arnold Williams said the child was shot in the face.

Police are searching for Demetrius Lorenzo Peals, 22, the victim's mother's boyfriend. They said Peals was at the scene during the shooting and have named him a person of interest.

Peals has been named a person of interest in the case.

"Please turn yourself in to the nearest police station," Williams said.

LATESTDetroit police search for mother's boyfriend after 3-year-old boy fatally shot

Williams said emergency medical officials were at the scene of a body that was found in the 11000 block of Morang Avenue when Peals ran out of a building from across the street with a child in his arms.

Police said Peals gave the child to the officials, who realized the child had a gunshot wound to his face. Officials took the boy to St. John Hospital in critical condition, but the child died from his injuries.

"It's senseless," Williams said. "There's no reason for any child to lose their lives. This should never happen. It should never happen. It's inexcusable."

Williams said the mother told police there was a conflict between neighbors and the gunshot was fired from outside the building, but officers didn't find evidence of shots fired from outside.

Williams said police believe the shot was fired from inside the building. The mother was in the home with Peals, the 3-year-old and a 1-year-old child. Police believe the mother and the 1-year-old child were in another room when Peals ran outside with the victim.

Peals has a previous criminal record of breaking and entering, police said. He couldn't be found after handing the boy to medical officials.

Peals is 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs 175 pounds.

No weapon was found inside the home.

There were no other injuries in the shooting, Williams said.

Police were called to the scene to investigate the body that was originally found across the street from the shooting. It's unclear if that person's death was suspicious or natural, but Williams said the child was able to get to the hospital quickly only because medical officials were already right across the street.

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