A two-year-old boy who was shot in the head only survived because the bullet missed an artery by just 1mm, his family have revealed as they made a desperate appeal to find those responsible.
The toddler, his mother, and two teenage boys were injured after a gunman fired at a man, believed to be in his late teens, in Harlesden, northwest London on the evening of 3 June.
Police say the attacker shot inside the car the youngster and three others were travelling in before fleeing on a motorbike.
Today, the boy’s grandmother Lillian Serunkuma, who also suffered the devastating loss of her 15-year-old son when he was stabbed to death outside his school gates in 2017, made an appeal to the public for information.
She said: “If you know the person responsible for this incident, you need to come forward and speak to the police.
“My grandson is two, he has never hurt anyone. The person who did this doesn’t deserve your protection or friendship.
“The gunman could clearly see that a woman and child were present in the car, and fired towards them without any regard for their safety, seriously hurting them both.
“My daughter has never hurt anyone and didn’t deserve to be shot multiple times protecting her child from harm.”
The two-year-old’s mother and the two teenagers who were also in the vehicle were taken to hospital with gunshot wounds. Their injuries were not life-threatening or life-changing.
Doctors say the youngster, who his family do not want to identify, would have died if the bullet had hit the artery.
Detective Chief Inspector Pete Wallis said: “I am pleased to say the little boy injured is now, thankfully, starting to show signs that his condition is beginning to improve.
“This is a very welcome development for everyone on the investigation team and of course his family.
“However, it must not be forgotten that this little boy was shot in an act of indiscriminate violence.”
A 20 year-old-man arrested on suspicion of four counts of attempted murder has been released under investigation, while a 19-year-old man arrested on suspicion of attempted murder has been bailed.
Three other men, aged 29, 23 and 36, arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender, have all been released under investigation.
Ms Serunkuma’s son, Quamari Serunkuma-Barnes, was knifed three times in an attack outside Capital City Academy in Willesden, west London, on 23 January 2017.
She branded his then 15-year-old killer’s actions as “pure evil” in a statement read at the Old Bailey as he was jailed for at least 14 years after being found guilty of murder.
She wrote: “You never gave Quamari a second chance to defend himself. You took his life in a cold and malicious way.”