WATTS (CBS) — The Los Angeles Kings hockey team and AEG has doubled the reward offered, to $100,000, for information leading to the teenager who shot and killed a 1-year-old boy and injured the baby’s father.
“It’s such a horrible tragedy. I think all of us were touched by it and moved, and wanted to help,” said Martha Saucedo, an AEG spokesperson.
A boy riding a bicycle opened fire on 24-year-old Mauro Cortez as he stood holding his baby, Angel Cortez, in the 10500 block of Hickory Street at 7:49 p.m. Monday, LAPD Officer Karen Rayner said.
Both victims were transported to a hospital, where the baby underwent surgery on his abdomen and later died. Cortez, who was shot in the shoulder, was released from the hospital Tuesday.
Angel, who was just 14 months old, was starting to talk, walk and learn baby sign language.
Police are looking for the suspect, who has been described as a 15- to 17-year-old boy.
They believe the shooting may have been gang-related. Neighbors tell CBS2’s Joy Benedict the family has no gang ties, but they recently took some purple shirts that were being handed out down the street from their home. The family, which is apparently in need, may not have understood the implications of taking the shirts.
City Councilman Joe Buscaino, who represents Watts, said he was able to secure a $50,000 emergency reward to flush out the killer after the devastating loss.
“The last thing I want…to bury a child,” said Buscaino. “This is just unjust, it’s not right, and we continue to plead with the community to have someone come forward.”
The city of Los Angeles first offered a $50,000 reward for information leading to the person responsible for the murder. The Los Angeles Kings and AEG also contributed an additional $50,000 towards the reward fund Tuesday, with a spokesperson saying they were moved by the story.
Anyone with information about the shooting was asked to contact the Los Angeles Police Department.