Brooklyn 3-Year-Old Survives Shooting While Recovering From Pit Bull Attack

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Photo: New York City Police Department

A Brooklyn toddler is in stable condition after sustaining a gunshot wound to the head over the weekend. Three-year-old Tharell Edward was being babysat by his mother's female roommate and a 22-year-old neighbor Akeem Bernard. "My mother had just left and the girl got up to use the bathroom," the little boy's sister told the Daily News. "She heard a gunshot and the guy was trying to act like he didn't know what happened." During his perp walk, Bernard, who was charged after nearly 24 hours of questioning and is being held on $75,000 bail, told reporters, "I did not shoot anybody."

The AP reports:

The Brooklyn district attorney's office says Bernard showed a gun to the mother's roommate Friday night and put it in a shoebox. A court complaint says the roommate heard a gunshot and found the boy bleeding in Bernard's arms.

Prosecutors say Bernard told her to hold off calling 911 so he could "stash the gun."

"He loves this child. He has no desire whatsoever to hurt this child. He is more concerned for the child's well-being than his own," Bernard's lawyer said. "The complaint shows that it was a non-intentional assault"

To make things that much more gut-punching, Tharell was in the process of recovering from an attack by a pit bull that reportedly belonged to his mother's boyfriend. "He looked happy," said a neighbor who had seen the child recently but blamed Tharell's mother for negligence. "Like he was just getting over the dog bite. Now this ... I'm pissed off. He's just a little kid!"