12-year-old paralyzed after drive-by shooting in Troy

Local

TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Troy Police are still searching for the suspect, or suspects, involved in a drive-by shooting on O’Neil Street that left a 12-year-old paralyzed.

It happened in broad daylight just before four o’clock Monday afternoon. Evidence technicians marked at least six bullet holes scattered across the front of the home. One of the bullets entered the home striking 12-year-old MJ Rivera.

The mother of five, Jona Rivera, told NEWS10 ABC her child had just finished school work and was starting chores. The 12-year-old was innocently sweeping and mopping the floors in the living room when a bullet came flying through their front window striking MJ in the back. MJ’s mother told NEWS10 her child is paralyzed from the waist down and that doctors are unable to remove the bullet that is lodged in MJ’s spine.

Rivera said this is now the second time her home was struck by gunfire in a drive-by shooting. Back in September, a man was shot a couple doors down, and two bullets ricocheted and hit their siding.

Rivera said the cameras outside of her home helped in that investigation, and she’s hopeful that they will also help police track down whoever shot her child.

MJ is a 7th grader at Troy Middle School, who is described as an old soul and a creative kid who loves to draw. MJ is still at Albany Medical Center and has a long road ahead. 

The Troy City School District released a statement:

“The Troy City School District is saddened and disturbed to learn of the shooting incident that took place on March 8 in which 7th Grade Troy Middle School student Matthew Rivera was struck by gunfire while in his home. Our thoughts are with Matthew and his family as we pray for his recovery. This kind of senseless violence has no place in our community and should not be the reality that any of our students or their families must face. The counseling team at Troy Middle School has been mobilized for student support.”

On March 11, a GoFundMe was created to help the Rivera Family. The Page says the funds will help repair the outside of the home, construct a wheelchair ramp for the house, create a handicap accessible bathroom and kitchen, secure wheelchair friendly transportation to medical and therapy appointments, and well help with medical expenses. 

Anyone with information is asked to give Troy Police a call at (518) 270-4411.

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