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'Unacceptable': 1-year-old shot to death on New Orleans street

1:18 PM, Aug 30, 2013   |    comments
Courtesy Aaron Samuels
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A 1-year-old girl out with her babysitter was killed when gunmen opened fire on a New Orleans street, and a hunt is underway for the culprits, police said.

The 18-year-old woman caring for little Londyn Samuels was wounded in the Thursday night shooting in the Central City neighborhood - where the police chief denounced the violence as "unacceptable."

"This is a time when the people and the city of New Orleans have to rally together," Superintendent Ronal Serpas said at the scene, appealing for tips from the community.

"Let us go make these people accountable for what they did."

The slain toddler's uncle said he was at a football game when he received the terrible news.

"They said, 'Londyn got shot,' and I almost dropped my phone," Tyrin Samuels, 23, told NBC News on Friday. "I said, 'What? How could that be?'"

He rushed to the hospital where family and friends waited to hear if the little girl who was just learning to walk and who loved Minnie Mouse would survive.

When they learned she had died, her mother, Andrea Samuels, was inconsolable, he said.

"I had to take her phone because every time she looked at a picture of Londyn on Instagram, she started crying again," the uncle said.

He said his sister, who has an older daughter named Paris, was helping their grandmother and had left Londyn in the care of a family friend.

According to police, when two shots rang out, the sitter tried to rush the child inside, but both were struck by bullets.

Police were on the scene within a minute but the shooters had already fled on foot. SWAT teams were canvassing the area on Friday and questioning two women and a man who had been uncooperative. No arrests had been made.

"If you seen something, come forward," Tyrin Samuels said. "Justice has to be done. This has to be solved to get murderers off the street."

He said relatives were consoling themselves with happier memories of the little girl.

"Londyn was a playful little baby. She never really cried too much, she was just happy," he said. "I just loved everything about her."

NBC News

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