Long Beach could ask for help from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors this coming week in creating a reward to find the suspects who police believe are responsible for a shooting earlier this month that left a a 12-year-old boy dead and 14-year-old girl hospitalized.
On Tuesday the City Council will vote on a formal request to the county to establish a $25,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of at least two male suspects who opened fire on a group of children as they were walking on the sidewalk in the 2200 block of Lewis Avenue at around 11:30 p.m. on May 9.
The gunfire hit 12-year-old Eric Gregory Brown III in the upper body, killing him. A 14-year-old girl who was walking with him was also struck and hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries. A third child, a 13-year-girl, was not injured.
The request would come after a rally this week where residents, clergy, neighborhood groups and activists gathered in front of City Hall to demand action in response Brown’s death. During the rally, Brown’s uncle called for a reward to be issued by the city to find the suspects and bring justice to his nephew.
“If you’re bold enough to do the crime, you have to be bold enough to do the time,” Lovell Brown said during the rally. “We want the city of Long Beach to give us a reward for the capture of the killers or the killer who assassinated our 12-year-old loved one.”
District 6 Councilmember Suely Saro, who put the request on the council’s agenda and whose district includes the area where the shooting happened, was not immediately available for comment. Councilmembers Al Austin and Megan Kerr, along with Mayor Rex Richardson, are also named in the request.
More than a week after the shooting, police are still investigating a motive in the case, and they have not released any suspect information.
Meanwhile, Brown’s slaying unleashed a wave of grief across the city, with local officials and community leaders condemning the the act of violence.
“Any time a child is lost, particularly, in this way, gun violence, it’s unconscionable. It hits different,” 8th District Councilman Al Austin said last week during a vigil for Brown.