Thursday, January 25, 2018

COMPTON—Sheriff's homicide detectives continued their efforts today to prevail on the suspect in the shooting death of a 3-year-old boy to turn himself in, authorities said.

Detectives were negotiating with the suspect's family and his attorney to facilitate his surrender, sheriff's Deputy Wally Bracks said. The department declined to name the suspect.

The shooting occurred at 7:44 p.m. Saturday in the 2800 block of West Alondra Boulevard in Compton, said Deputy Charles Moore of the Sheriff's Information Bureau. Franklin Ponros died at a hospital, the coroner's office reported.

Two men were arguing in the parking lot of a business. One of the men involved in the dispute began to get into a car driven by his girlfriend, Moore said. The suspect then fired shots into the vehicle, and the occupants subsequently discovered that the 3-year-old boy had suffered a gunshot wound, he said.

Deputies responding to the 17200 block of South Central Avenue in Carson, to where the child's mother apparently had driven in search of help, rushed the boy to an area hospital, where he was later pronounced dead, officials said.

The suspect was described as a male driving a dark sedan last seen headed westbound on Alondra Boulevard.

Dozens of mourners, including the boy's cousins and the alleged shooter's father, gathered at the crime scene Sunday evening for a candlelight vigil, Najee Ali, director of Project Islamic Hope, said in remarks quoted by the Los Angeles Times.

“This 3-year-old child's death struck a nerve with everyone,” Ali said, adding that many of the mourners were parents. “The reality is that this child could've been anyone's child, who was simply in the car at the store and lost his life.”

Sheriff's homicide detectives, who suspect the shooting was gang- related, have asked anyone with information regarding the boy's death to call them at (323) 890-5500.