6-Month-Old Shot, Dies, in Chicago. Father in Serious Condition

Image: 6-Month-Old Shot, Dies, in Chicago. Father in Serious Condition (AP Images)

Tuesday, 12 Mar 2013 04:09 PM

By Michael Mullins

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A 6-month-old baby girl died Tuesday morning after she and her father were targeted in a reportedly gang-related shooting in Chicago Monday. The child's father remains in serious but stable condition.

Jonylah Watkins underwent hours of surgery at the Comer Children's Hospital but was pronounced dead around 6 a.m. Tuesday.

"This morning, the baby passed away," Rev. Corey Brooks, a spokesman for the family, told the Chicago Tribune. "We have another tragedy in the city of Chicago."

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Jonathan Watkins, 29, the baby's father, was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital after suffering gunshot wounds to his left side and right buttock, as well as a graze wound to the face.

Officials said an unidentified gunman opened fire on the pair as Watkins stood by his minivan's open side door, changing the baby's diaper Monday afternoon. The gunman then ran to a nearby parking lot and jumped into a blue conversion van that sped away, police said.

Watkins reportedly belongs to a gang, according to Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy.

The baby's mother was at work at the time of the shooting, family members told the Tribune. She was reportedly shot in the leg last spring while pregnant with Jonylah.

"She's very distraught, she's in a lot of pain," Brooks told the Tribune. "They just got married several weeks ago. This is a tough time."

Chicago has experienced a surge in gun violence, and the majority of it is gang-related. Last year, there were at least 500 homicides. In 2011, there were 435 homicides.

Last month, a Connecticut grandmother shot and killed both her 6-month-old and 2-year-old grandsons before turning the gun on herself. The woman was supposed to pick up the two boys from daycare and take them home to open one of the boy's birthday presents.

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