HICKORY, N.C. (WBTV) - A 7-year-old boy was fatally shot while riding in a car with his mother and two other children in Hickory Wednesday night.
The shooting happened around 11:12 p.m. on Tate Boulevard SE near 19th Street SE. Police say 7-year-old Zakylen Greylen Harris’s mother was driving when someone shot into the car, killing Harris. A 1-year-old and a 6-year-old were also in the car.
Harris was shot in the neck and taken to Catawba Valley Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, police say.
Hickory Police Captain Jeff Young says the mother told investigators that she put her turn signal on and went into the right lane, in the path of the SUV.
“She said that she cut the person off, but not intentionally,” Young said.
That’s when the mother, according to Young, heard someone yell and saw the blonde woman in the SUV’s passenger seat. A moment later, there was a muzzle flash.
“Her back glass broke,” said Young. “She looks back and sees that her son was shot.”
The mother pulled off to the side of the road and the SUV kept going “at a high rate of speed, said Young.
Hickory Police say they need the public’s help in this case. The video below shows the victim vehicle turning on to Tate Boulevard, as the suspect vehicle pulled up behind them.
“I can tell you this - that the men and women of the Hickory Police Department will act tirelessly to see that justice is brought to the coward that did this - that’s how i feel about it,” Police Chief Thurman Whisnant said.
The suspect vehicle is described as a small, dark-colored SUV. Police say there were possibly multiple occupants, including a woman with blonde hair in the front passenger seat.
Authorities say it was a random act of violence and they need the public’s help. Chief Whisnant says there was no reason for the shooting.
“This was a senseless act of violence and there’s no excuse for this,” Whisnant said.
Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Hickory Police Department at 828-328-5551.