3-Year-Old Boy Shot Dead At Birthday Party

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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A three-year-old boy was fatally shot at a birthday party in Florida on Saturday night, police said.

Officers responded to a ShotSpotter alert around 8:00 p.m. Saturday in Miami, according to the Miami-Dade Police Department. Upon arrival, officers found the child, later identified as Elijah LaFrance, “suffering from an apparent gunshot wound.” The child was immediately taken to a local hospital where he later died, police said.

An adult female was also shot and taken to Aventura Hospital in stable condition, according to police. Authorities said the victims were attending a birthday party at a short-term rental. (RELATED: 7-Year-Old Fatally Shot While Sitting In A McDonald’s Drive Through)

The incident occurred after an altercation, CBS 4 Miami reported. LaFrance’s uncle Adrian Annestor, who was at the party, said he was devastated, according to the report.

“They killed him. Oh God, he is still on my mind. I was just playing with him,” he reportedly said. “I wish it could have been me because I’ve lived enough. He couldn’t even say mom and dad.”

A neighbor identified as Zobop called the unidentified shooter or shooters a “coward,” according to the report. “How you gonna go and you see a party with children inside and you open fire on them. You are nothing but a coward. You are a coward,” Zobop said.

“Last night a three-year-old was shot & killed at a birthday party,” Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said in a tweet. “There are no words to describe the immense loss & anger our community is feeling. We will do everything we can to bring this murderer to justice & we must stand together to demand an end to this cycle of tragedy.”