A Brooklyn Park man has been charged in a gang-related, middle-of-the-night shooting that left a 17-year-old male paralyzed from the waist down.
Laltigus Rodriguez Laray Lyons, 18, faces one count of aiding and abetting first-degree assault committed for benefit of a gang and one count of aiding and abetting first degree assault. Both are felony charges. If convicted, Lyons faces up to 30 years in prison and a $30,000 fine for the former charge and up to 20 years in prison and a $30,000 fine for the latter.
According to the criminal complaint, police responded to a large fight outside a residence on the 7700 block of Unity Avenue North at 12:34 a.m. Jan. 6. An updated call reported several shots fired nearby.
Officers found a 17-year-old male on the ground near the intersection of Brooklyn Boulevard and Welcome Avenue, about a block behind the Village Creek Community Police Station. The victim had been shot in the back and was unresponsive. He was taken to North Memorial Hospital.
After puncturing a lung and causing severe internal bleeding, the bullet lodged in the victim’s spine, and he is paralyzed from the waist down. He remained hospitalized Jan. 17.
Witnesses told police the victim had been at the party on Unity Avenue. Witnesses had also seen gang members at the party and overheard gang names.
Investigators determined the victim and a small groupleft the party around midnight and walked along Brookdale Drive.
The complaint says Lyons and two other males approached the victim and his group near the intersection of Brookdale Drive and Welcome Avenue.
The victim’s group reportedly yelled at Lyons’ group to determine their gang affiliation, and the groups exchanged hostile words. Witnesses told police Lyons and the victim are affiliated with rival criminal street gangs.
Lyons allegedly pulled a small-caliber revolver from his waistband and fired multiple shots into the victim’s group at close range, and a bullet struck the victim in the back. Then Lyons and those with him fled, police say.
When presented with a photographic lineup, multiple witnesses, including the victim, identified Lyons as the shooter.
After waiving his Miranda rights, Lyons admitted to being present with his brother and another person during the conflict. He said the groups began to fight, but he denied being the shooter. He said he heard shots close by but didn’t know who fired them. He also denied being a gang member but admitted he hangs out with members of one gang in question.
As of Jan. 17, Lyons was being held in Hennepin County Jail in lieu of $300,000 bail.
Contact Jonathan Young at [email protected]