RICHMOND -- A baby sitting on the floor of an apartment was struck by a bullet fragment and seriously injured Thursday during a shooting in the city's Iron Triangle.
The 1-year-old boy was taken to Children's Hospital Oakland with a neck wound after the city's ShotSpotter audio system reported shots fired about 1:15 p.m. near First Street and Macdonald Avenue.
"Doctors removed a fragment of a bullet from the child's neck," Capt. Mark Gagan said Thursday afternoon. "It was not an entire projectile."
Police said about 3:30 p.m. that the child's condition was improving and that he was stable. Doctors planned to keep him at the hospital for at least one night to monitor his condition.
"(His) condition is less critical than initially thought," said Richmond police Chief Chris Magnus, visibly upset as he spoke to reporters after the incident. "We're putting everything we have into this case.
"You have a 1-year-old child that's literally in the arms of the grandparents there feeding him, and bullets come into the house," Magnus said. "I am really angry about this. I am sickened. I am appalled."
More than 75 people, including dozens of police, were at the scene on the western edge of the city's Iron Triangle in the minutes after the shooting.
The boy was in a unit of the Saint John's Apartments at 121 West Macdonald Ave. when the shooting took place.
An as-yet-unidentified shooter fired at a man in the street outside the building, police said. At least four rounds struck the apartment, which is at least 30 yards away from where the shooter fired.
There was only "one intended victim," according to Lt. Bisa French. Police were investigating whether the shooting was gang-related.
One man showed up at a nearby hospital after the shooting with a gunshot wound in his leg, police said. It was not known whether he was involved in the Macdonald Avenue shooting or a different incident.
A parking lot across Macdonald Avenue was riddled with shell-casing markers, and a bike in the middle of the street also had yellow bullet markers around it.
The baby's grandfather came out of the apartment roughly an hour after the shooting and thanked police before rushing to the hospital to be with his grandson.
The baby's father, who works at a corner market in San Pablo, was also there, sobbing in his car shortly after the shooting happened. He later drove to Children's Hospital Oakland with an agent from the Office of Neighborhood Safety.
"This is tragic," said the Rev. Andre Shumake of the Richmond Improvement Association. "Imagine being at work and getting a call that your infant son has been shot."
Magnus said the department will offer a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspect. He said the high amount stemmed from the "brazenness" of the daytime shooting.
Magnus added that he spoke with the baby's family after the shooting, telling them of the department's "deep concern and our willingness to support them in any way we can. They know that we are very, very troubled by this.
"We are not going to tolerate this in Richmond. ... This is completely unacceptable, and it's our highest priority to catch those involved."
A Richmond-area hotel agreed to house the family Thursday night, according to Terrance Cheung, chief of staff for Contra Costa County Supervisor John Gioia.
"All of us in the community are horrified at these types of events and want to do what we can to help this family," Gioia said.
Anyone with information is asked to call Richmond police at 510-233-1214. Anonymous tips can be called in at 510-232-8477.
A fund has been set up at Mechanics Bank to help the family of the 1-year-old child injured in Thursday's shooting. Checks can be sent to the Ali Family Relief Fund, c/o Mechanics Bank, 4100 Macdonald Ave., Richmond, CA 94805.