Christopher Linder Philadelphia man arrested in the shooting of 7 year old boy, Zamar Jones who remains in critical condition following weekend shooting.
A 7-year-old Philadelphia boy has mortally succumbed to his injuries after being shot in the head in crossfire over the weekend as a suspect was taken into custody on Monday.
Zamar Jones, was struck in the head by one of more than 12 gun-shots that rang out late Saturday as he played outside the family porch with other children on his West Philadelphia block, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
Come Monday afternoon, Christopher Linder, 27, faced two counts of attempted murder and other charges (expected to now be upgraded to murder), including aggravated assault, illegal possession of a gun, and charges related to the theft of a vehicle — all felonies announced Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner. He also faces misdemeanor charges for simple assault and recklessly endangering another person.
‘As long as our communities are flooded with firearms, and as long as the conditions exist that spur people to pick them up with little care for their futures, these tragedies will occur,’ Krasner said Monday in a statement announcing the charges against accused shooter Christopher Linder.
Linder is accused of opening fire on a group of people who were standing outside at the time, two of whom fired back, police told media. The shooting occurred on the 200 block of North Simpson Street, a tight-knit residential street that borders Cobbs Creek Park – but also known for its criminal underbelly.
Suspect had been released from prison early
Of note, Linder has two prior convictions: one for illegally having a gun in 2012, and another from 2014 for aggravated assault, conspiracy and robbery. He was sentenced to a maximum of 19 years in prison, but it is unclear why he spent only five years behind bars.
A nurse who lives nearby performed CPR on the 7 year old boy until cops arrived and took Zamar to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where he remained Sunday in critical condition.
Zamar, who was shot on his porch near his toy race car and scooter, had lived on the block for several years and is well-known throughout the neighborhood, neighbor Makeeba McNeely said.
‘He has best friends from the top of the block to the bottom of the block,’ McNeely’s 13-year-old daughter, Zion, told the Inquirer.
The boy, who is about to begin second grade this fall, is known for his love of popsicles, his green scooter and his dog and cat, the McNeelys said.
‘He’s a beautiful kid,’ McNeely said. ‘Inquisitive, curious — he’s a little boy. And he was playing.’
Along with Linder’s arrest, two others are still being sought early Monday, cops said.
‘Enough is enough’- but is it?
‘At this time there is one person in custody,’ Philadelphia police said in a statement. ‘His information will be released upon completion of the investigation and/or formal charges.’
Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said in a statement department officials were ‘heartbroken’ by the shooting, characterizing it as ‘especially tragic,’ WPVI reports.
The two other shooters fled the scene in a maroon Ford Taurus, which was later recovered in the city’s Overbrook section, WPVI reports.
‘Enough is enough,’ one man who lives on the block, Mark Thompson, told via WPVI. ‘When we start hurting innocent children, enough is enough.’
It remained unclear what initiated the seemingly indiscriminate inner city shooting in the primarily mixed ‘urban’ neighborhood.
Anyone with information regarding this investigation is asked to call 215-686-TIPS.