A 14-year-old boy armed with a replica gun was shot and wounded by a Baltimore police officer Wednesday afternoon. The teen, later identified by the Baltimore Sun as Dedric Colvin, ran when approached by two undercover police officers driving an unmarked police car shortly after 4 p.m., the authorities said. He is expected to survive after being hit in the leg and the shoulder.
Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis, who said that the boy was 13, said that he had been seen with what appeared to be a semi-automatic pistol in his hand. Colvin’s mother later said it was a BB gun.
“It is a dead-on ringer, semi-automatic pistol that resembles a Beretta handgun,” Davis said. “Those police officers had no way of knowing that it was not, in fact, an actual firearm. It looks like a firearm.”
Only one of the two officers opened fire on the eighth grader, who was reportedly shot in the “lower extremities,” Davis said.
The commissioner was unsure of what officers said, if anything, before gunfire erupted in southeast Baltimore.
“So when he ran, and the foot chase was a good 150 or so yards, and rounded a corner, kept running, he had every opportunity to drop the gun,” Davis said.
“He had every opportunity to stop, put his hands in the air, comply with the instructions of the police officers. I don’t what’s going through a 13-year-old’s mind. I don’t know why he decided to put a gun in his hand and leave his house. I wish he didn’t. I’m sure his mom wishes he didn’t. But the Baltimore Police Department is tasked with identifying people who pose a threat to this community.”
Colvin’s mother Volanda Young told the Sun that she saw her son covered in blood on the street after his older brother rushed home to tell her that the teen had been shot.
She said that she didn’t know where he got the gun, but added that she knew he was scared and that he was fleeing when he was shot.
Young herself said that it was “humiliating” being taken in for police questioning before being allowed to go to the hospital where her son is recovering.Davis said that he had “no reason to believe that these officers acted inappropriately whatsoever” in the incident.