Residents on Birch St. say Saturday wasn’t the first time someone in their neighborhood had been killed
Toys still sit on the front lawn of a home on the 1900 block of Birch St. after the shooting death of 3-year-old Amir Antoine. According to the Baton Rouge coroner’s office the toddler shot himself in the head, which was ruled an accident.
“We don’t want to see anymore accidental shootings or any deaths,” BRPD spokesman Don Coppola said on Monday.
Leola York and her husband Bobby live on the same street as Antoine. She said she immediately started crying when she heard the news. York says it wasn’t the first time she has woken up to police sirens on her street. In 2016 someone else was killed in the same home the three-year-old was shot; that victim was also a minor.
“It’s just that particular house [where the shootings took place] where something that’s always happening,” York said.
According to court documents, the three-year-old’s uncle, Ahmad Antoine, shot and killed 17-year-old Devin Anderson in 2016. The shooting was ruled an accident. Antoine was charged with negligent homicide and was sentenced to five years of probation.
The documents say Anderson and Antoine were on the porch when the shooting happened. Antoine told police they were playing with the gun and it went off. Authorities say the same gun was not used in both shootings.
York says with these two incidents she’s worried about the neighborhood’s safety. This is something her husband says he will keep an eye on.
“There’s no safe place anymore,” Bobby York said.
As the toys outside of Antoine’s home collect dust, York says she can’t help but remember the cute toddler that used to play outside and the teen that was taken too soon. She told me she hopes this tragedy will be the last.