COMPTON (CBSLA) — A Compton family is mourning the death of a child whose life was lost to gang violence, and at a vigil Wednesday, they asked that one of the men responsible be brought to justice.
Three-year-old Franklin Pon-Ros died Saturday night after being caught in gang crossfire in Compton. He was sitting in the back of a vehicle in his car seat when a bullet struck him in the head.
On Monday, known gang member Dwayne Christopher Ward, 29, of Compton turned himself in to homicide detectives. A bullet from his gun killed Franklin Pon-Ros.
In surveillance video of Nate Liquor’s parking, Ward can be seen firing at a man approaching the vehicle where young Franklin was sitting.
The child’s family is demanding that man, whom they believe started the shooting, also be placed in custody.
Initial reports said the man who eventually entered the car with Franklin inside was his mother’s boyfriend.
Ward told police he was only defending himself from the man he said shot first, and the family believes him.
“You started the shooting, so I don’t understand why you’re not behind bars,” Franklin’s father Richard Ros told CBS2 News, referring the yet unnamed man.
With Ward’s arrest, there are currently no outstanding suspects, though that could change when the case is presented to prosecutors.
Sheriff’s investigators said the key to the investigation is witness accounts of the incident.
After the boy was shot Saturday, someone drove the vehicle to Carson, where sheriff’s deputies intercepted the child. Deputies opted to drive Franklin to the hospital themselves.
The boy was pronounced dead later that night at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.