“It’s sickening:” Police Chief pleads for community’s help after baby, 4 others shot in Flint

Flint’s Police Chief said just after 6 p.m. Thursday, a group of people, in a white Chevrolet Equinox, drove down Tebo Street shooting into homes and vehicles.
Published: Jan. 29, 2021 at 5:14 PM EST
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - (1/29/2021) - “Here we are, another infant caught in the middle of grownups’ mess,” Flint’s Police Chief, Terence Green said.

He’s not holding back his frustration over Thursday night’s deadly shooting.

Chief Green said just after 6 p.m. Thursday, January 29, a group of people drove down Tebo Street shooting into homes and vehicles.

Five people suffered gunshot wounds. One woman is dead. An 11-month-old baby girl is still in critical condition.

Around 6 p.m. Thursday night, the Chief said one of his officers was responding to a car crash on Lippincott Boulevard, when someone ran up to her with a baby who had been shot.

The Chief said the officer called for someone to respond to the shooting scene on Tebo Street, as she rushed the baby girl to a hospital.

“It’s sickening and disturbing, frustrating,” he commented.

When officers arrived to Tebo Street, the Chief said they found four more people suffering from gunshot wounds.

He explained, so far, the investigation reveals a group of people in a white Chevrolet Equinox drove north down Tebo Street shooting out of the car into homes and other vehicles.

The Chief said the 11-month-old baby girl was in a car with her 17-year-old father who was also shot. He’s in good condition.

It’s believed the three other people were outside a home when they were shot. A 57-year-old woman who lives there is dead. A 46-year-old man is in critical condition. And, a 28-year-old woman is in good condition.

The relationship between those five is unknown, but Chief Green said the shooting wasn’t random. These five were targeted.

“We’re leaning towards there’s possibly an ongoing feud. We don’t know what -- what the relationship was with the suspects in the Equinox and the victims,” he shared.

The Chief said they’re also still investigating why the shooting started, what type and how many guns were used, how many people were in the suspect vehicle and whether any of the victims shot back.

“I will say this, some of the, some of the names involved are familiar - law enforcement are familiar with them,” he said.

This is the third shooting in Flint involving a young child in the last 3 months.

In October, 3-year-old Messiah Williams died after his home on the City’s East side was shot up.

In December, a 10-month old baby boy and his grandmother died after they were shot while inside a home on Flint’s north side.

Chief Green added, “I feel we have a cycle of violence that we have to break. It has to be broken.”

He said something needs to change, but won’t without the community’s help.

Working with the Michigan State Police and FBI, the Chief explained his officers are doing everything they can to curb the gun violence in Flint.

“You can have 100 officers, you know, in that neighborhood and a crime is committed, if the community’s not going to assist and step up and speak up, what good does it do?” he asked.

Chief Green said his department needs the community’s help to put an end to the uptick in gun violence, but the “no snitch” mentality makes investigating difficult.

“All these people involved and, and the information that the police department is receiving and the investigators’ receiving is sketchy at best,” he explained.

The Chief is worried about his overworked officers who go from one violent crime call to another.

The night before, on Wednesday, two people died in a shooting on the City’s south side.

“It’s straining on them, you know, these officers have families, they have children of their own. And to see a child in that condition, you have to be concerned about the mental state of the officers involved in this,” he said.

That’s one of the many reasons why the Chief said the City has deployed countless resources and initiated some crime strategies to be more proactive. The problem, he said, is most shootings are retaliatory. It’s the same people involved over and over again.

Just hours after the shooting on Tebo Street, Flint police responded to another drive-by shooting on West Eldridge. The Chief said it happened after midnight Friday morning.

Bullets were fired into a home, hitting a 29-year-old man and 25-year-old woman. Both are in good condition.

Flint’s Mayor said he’s “heartbroken” over Thursday night’s shooting and praying for the families of the five victims.

Sheldon Neeley echoed the Chief’s call for the community to speak up and be a partner in reducing crime in Flint.

A reminder you always remain anonymous when you call Crime Stoppers of Flint and Genesee County with a tip.

The Mayor also shared his administration’s efforts to get guns out of the community.

“We’re advocating and we’re taking more guns off the streets,” Mayor Neeley said. “We have taken 50% more guns off the street than we did last year. We kept ‘em off the street. The City of Flint no longer auctions weapons off to be put back into the hands to people that may commit crimes, like this one. We destroy all weapons now. And so, you know, we’re doing our part, trying to make sure that people don’t have the ability to commit these heinous acts.”

This is the largest mass shooting in Flint since last July when six people were shot during an illegal “pop-up party” at Hallwood Plaza.

The event was reportedly organized via Facebook on behalf of a local rapper. Around 1,000 people showed up, but a fight broke out and several people fired weapons.

Shortly after the shooting, all victims were listed in “stable” condition.

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