Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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Toddler shot in face recovering after surgery

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Buffalo: Toddler shot in face recovering after surgery
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NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. — The toddler who was shot in the face Tuesday during a drive-by shooting is out of surgery and recovering.

Her family's pastor tells us two-year-old Jraeona Moore remains on a ventilator because of the swelling, but doctors say her prognosis is good.

The girl was shot Tuesday afternoon during a drive-by shooting outside a Niagara Falls grocery store. She was sitting in a car parked outside, and a bullet hit her in the face, breaking bones.

Jraeona had surgery Tuesday night, but Pastor Duane Thomas said she looked much better today.

"She's gonna be fine. She's gonna be fine. She's a fighter. You know - a two-year-old child that was able to sustain this - I don't know if I would have been able to do this. But she is fighting, and she is strong, and I'm so glad about it," said Thomas.

Niagara Falls Police are searching for a person of interest in connection with the shooting. They're also looking for a mid sized silver sedan with a rear spoiler that may have been used.

Witnesses told YNN's Ryan Whalen that the scene unfolded quickly.

The manage of the corner grocery store at 17th and Pierce says a vehicle drove this way up 17th Street and fired shots at a car with two people in it, parked in front of the store.

"I heard three shots, then seconds later I heard somebody scream like somebody got hit," said Abdo Salleh, Hometown Grocery manager. "I've been here almost 20 some years now. When you hear a gunshot, it's scary stuff."

Salleh said a woman came into his store right before 1:30 in the afternoon Tuesday. They both heard gunshots.

"As soon as she walked in this store, she went right back out and she was saying, my baby, my baby. She opened the car, she saw a baby."

He says a man and child were waiting in the white vehicle outside when shots were fired. Police say the two-year-old girl was taken to Women and Children's Hospital.

"I'm shocked, shocked when I heard the bullet. When I heard the mother screaming, as soon as she went inside the car, she drives through and she was gone."

In the aftermath, neighbors and witnesses gathered around trying to figure out what had happened.

"I didn't know what to do because usually if you hear something like that, it's normal around here, people shooting but not at each other, being stupid shooting at the air and stuff."

Many were angry an innocent child was caught in the crossfire.

"That's terrible. It's really terrible. It's pretty bad. You can't go to the store and not get shot at. That's bad," said A.J., a witness.

The manager of the Hometown Grocery says police did confiscate security footage from cameras in the parking lot.

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