The Latino community of Winston-Salem suffered a terrible tragedy last weekend. What began as a dangerous game for three Latino teenagers ended in the tragic murder of a 5-year-old Latino boy.
On the afternoon of Saturday, , Oscar Méndez Rodríguez, 17 years old, along with a 15-year-old and a 14-year-old, got a .38 caliber pistol and got into a car. For some inexplicable reason, they thought that it was a good idea to terrorize an apartment complex, so they started shooting at the buildings around 5:20 p.m.
Witnesses said that the teenagers fired several shots while driving. The bullets began to fly in the middle of an area populated by many Latinos, until one of the bullets reached the room of a small child: Alberto Rios Navarrette.
The boy fell to the ground with a bullet wound to the head, to the horror of his parents and his 3-year-old sister who were inside the apartment when the shooting occurred. The child was taken to a hospital where he underwent emergency surgery, but medical efforts were in vain, and around 8:00 p.m. the young boy died.
The child’s parents, Alberto Ríos and Alma Navarrete, were not injured during the incident, but they were devastated by the death of their young son.
What motivated such an act of cruelty? According to a preliminary report from the Winston-Salem Police Department, there was no evidence that the victim’s apartment was an intentional target; that is, the authorities believe that this tragedy is a random act of violence.
The three teenagers accused of having perpetrated this senseless crime were arrested a few hours later.