It took around four hours for cops to respond to a shooting in Houston that severely injured George Floyd’s 4-year-old grandniece, who’s now recovering in the hospital. And the family believes they may have been targeted.
Around 3 a.m. on New Year’s Day in Southside Houston, an unidentified gunman fired multiple shots into the second-story apartment of Derrick Delane, whose family was a prominent fixture of the protests after Floyd’s murder last spring. At least one bullet hit his 4-year-old daughter, Arianna, who was sleeping at the time, in the torso.
“My daughter jumped up and said, 'Daddy, I've been hit!' and I was shocked until I seen the blood, and I realized my 4-year-old daughter was really hit," Delane told Houston ABC affiliate KTRK-TV. "She didn't know what was going on. She was asleep."
Although Delane called 911 shortly after the shooting, the police and first responders didn’t show up until around 7 a.m. Arianna’s panicked parents ended up rushing her to the hospital themselves.
The young girl suffered a punctured lung and liver as well as three broken ribs and had to undergo surgery when she arrived at the hospital Saturday. She’s currently in stable condition, according to her father. Had her family not rushed Arianna to the hospital, however, doctors said she might have succumbed to her injuries, George Floyd’s sister told FOX 26.
Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said the department is actively looking into why police took as long as they did to respond to the family’s 911 call.
“I am aware and have concerns regarding the delayed response time in this incident and have initiated an Internal Affairs investigation,” Finner said in a statement Tuesday. “I ask the city to continue to pray for the child’s full recovery and assist in providing information that would lead to the arrest of the suspect or suspects responsible.
Houston Police had no further comment for VICE News Wednesday. The police also say they don’t have any leads on who fired at the apartment.
Delane, however, believes that his home was targeted by gunfire. The family, including 4-year-old Arianna, had been featured in local coverage of the trial for George Floyd’s murder last spring and attended several rallies in Floyd’s name in the summer of 2020.
“Why would my house get shot up?” he told local station KTRK-TV. “My daughter don't know. I can't explain that to her. As the father, you're supposed to protect the kids.”
LaTonya Floyd, Arianna’s grandmother, was close to her late brother. The last time she spoke to Floyd on the phone, the two sang “Keep On Loving You” by REO Speedwagon together, she told People magazine last year.
“We used to sing the heck out of that,” she said. “It makes me cry every time I think about it.”
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