‘This one hurts’: Mayor, chief frustrated after 6-month-old shot dead in NW Atlanta

Police said the child was caught in the crossfire of a shooting in northwest Atlanta. He was identified by his family as Grayson Matthew Fleming-Gray of Cumming. (Credit: Channel 2 Action News)

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

caption arrowCaption
Police said the child was caught in the crossfire of a shooting in northwest Atlanta. He was identified by his family as Grayson Matthew Fleming-Gray of Cumming. (Credit: Channel 2 Action News)

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

For the second time this month, a baby became a homicide victim in Atlanta. On Monday afternoon, a 6-month-old riding in a car was killed in the Dixie Hills neighborhood of northwest Atlanta.

Standing side by side at the scene, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens and police Chief Rodney Bryant echoed a similar message: Enough is enough.

“These children are bearing the burden and the pain of adults who are choosing to use guns to solve disputes,” Dickens said. “The children are bearing this burden with their lives, and I’m here to ask, and to demand, that it stop right now.”

It was the third shooting in Atlanta involving a child this year, though one survived. The death of Grayson Matthew Fleming-Gray is the 12th homicide investigation of 2022 for Atlanta police and the 11th due to a shooting. By this day last year, the agency had investigated nine homicides on the way to 158 for the year, according to crime data.

Shortly before 3 p.m. Monday, Atlanta police were called to a Food Mart corner store at 202 Anderson Avenue about a shooting, officials confirmed. Bryant said the child was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital but died there. His officers spent the afternoon consoling the baby’s mother, he said.

“This is painful. This one hurts for a ... 6-month-old to be riding down the street and become a victim to gun violence — random gun violence — between two people who can’t resolve a simple issue,” Bryant said.

The investigation continued late Monday, and Bryant said officers would be working throughout the night. No one was in custody Monday evening.

“I want the family of this innocent 6-month-old child to know that we care,” Dickens said.

ExploreUPDATE: Atlanta police arrest suspect accused of killing 6-month-old boy

On Wednesday, a 5-year-old was grazed by a bullet after being caught in the crossfire of a shootout between two drivers in southwest Atlanta. That shooting took place in the 1800 block of Campbellton Road. Police said the child was in the back seat of a car when the drivers of two separate vehicles began shooting at each other.

One of the stray bullets pierced the back seat of the vehicle in which the child was riding and glanced off the 5-year-old’s back, police said. The child was taken to a hospital, and two people were arrested at the scene.

Also last week, an Atlanta mother was arrested and charged with second-degree murder in the Jan. 12 shooting of her 1-year-old daughter. That child, whose name was not released, was critically injured when another child in a Harwell Road home found an unsecured gun and fired it, according to Atlanta police.

The 1-year-old was shot once and rushed to a hospital, where she died three days later. Amaiya Dachanel Williams, 21, was booked into the Fulton County Jail on Thursday.

ExploreWoman arrested after 1-year-old daughter shot by child with unsecured gun

The city leaders said stopping gun violence remains a priority. Dickens said his home is not far from where the baby was killed Monday. Bryant said his agency will continue to work with state parole leaders to get weapons out of the hands of felons who become repeat offenders.

“The proliferation of weaponry that we’re seeing on these streets, we have to do something about that,” Bryant said. “We can no longer allow our criminals to continue to carry guns.”

— Staff writer Rosana Hughes contributed to this article.