NYPD hosts NYC block party where kids nearly shot, adds crisis response training,

MOUNT EDEN, Bronx (WABC) -- The NYPD hosted a block party and barbecue Wednesday afternoon at the scene of the Bronx shooting that sent two siblings scrambling and left them traumatized.

The "Protect Our Kids" event was held in the vicinity of 1551 Sheridan Avenue in the Mount Eden section, and Chief Of Department Rodney Harrison was there to answer questions.

The NYPD brought in the Mounted Unit, K9s, Highway Patrol vehicles, the Emergency Service Unit, a DJ, video gaming setups, and clergy to encourage the children of the neighborhood to come out and have a safe, fun time.

The two young kids who amazingly avoided injury when the gunman opened fire inches away were at the event with their family.

Earlier this week, their parents said the kids are scarred from the incident.

"The kids have a bunch of bruises," said dad Christian, who didn't want his last name used. "My daughter can't move her arm. My son has bruises all over. He's traumatized, can't sleep. When he hears a noise, he gets nervous."

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Christian said he was watching from the family's first-floor apartment as the kids went to a deli across the street to buy some candy. That's when the masked gunman opened fire on a 24-year-old man, hitting him three times in the back and both legs.

As the victim tried to get away, he ran into and knocked down Christian's 5-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter.

Both children somehow escaped unharmed from the harrowing close-range gunfire.

"What happened to me, that my children are alive because of a miracle, thank God," Christian said. "It could happen to any other kid, any other father or mother this situation."

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The parents made it clear that they do not know the gunman or the victim, and neither do their kids.

"The kids, us, we don't know that person," mom Dayana said. "They were not with that person."

Police say a person of interest has been identified, and detectives are gathering information and working with the Bronx District Attorneys office in building a case against the man.

"We have a person of interest we are looking at, but we are not there yet," NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig said. "We are close."

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A 24-year-old man was shot by a gunman who opened fire inches from children diving for safety in the Bronx


Earlier Wednesday, the NYPD unveiled details of a new crisis response training program for its officers ahead of a separate block party event Wednesday afternoon in the Bronx.

The crisis response program is called Integrated Communication, Assessment and Tactics, or ICAT. It is designed to help officers arriving on the scene of crisis situations respond more effectively.

It uses bodycam and other videos to teach evaluation and de-escalation techniques that experts say can keep officers and community members safer.

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