Nearly 20 months after a 1-year-old girl was fatally shot while she was in her crib in Compton, four people face various charges related to her killing, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department announced Wednesday.
Autumn Johnson died after being struck in the head by a bullet in the 300 block of North Holly Avenue on the evening of Feb. 9, 2016, a few days after her first birthday. Deputies arrived at the scene before paramedics and, in an effort to save the child’s life, rushed the little girl in their own patrol car to a hospital, according to the Sheriff’s Department.
She was pronounced dead a short time after the two deputies got to the hospital.
The shooting appeared to have been gang-related, sheriff’s officials said at the time. The shots were fired into a converted garage apartment, where the family lived.
“It looks like they targeted a person, and they didn’t shoot the house, they shot into the garage. So they were obviously targeting whoever’s living in the garage,” sheriff’s Lt. John Corina said after the shooting occurred.
“Of course the baby’s not the target,” Corina added. “The baby caught a stray round.”
On Wednesday, the Sheriff’s Department announced they had made four arrests in the case, and that the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office had already filed charges.
Davion Douglas, 27; Denzell Hull, 25; and Ronzay Richards, 25, faced murder and attempted murder charges, sheriff’s officials said in a news release.
A fourth suspect, 24-year-old Ray Patterson, was charged with accessory after the killing, the release stated. Patterson was initially arrested on suspicion of murder about two weeks after the homicide, but was released after prosecutors declined to file charges against him in the case.
Hull was also charged in a separate attempted homicide that occurred approximately a month after Autumn was killed, according to authorities.
He and Douglas were already incarcerated in state prison in an unrelated burglary case, while Patterson was in the Nevada State Prison on an unrelated weapons charge, the release stated.
On Wednesday, an arrest warrant was issued for Richards, and he was subsequently taken into custody, according to the release.
The four are expected to be arraigned next Friday.
The case remains under investigation, and anyone with information is urged to call the department’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Anonymous tips can be left by dialing 800-222-8477 or by using the going to the website http://lacrimestoppers.org.