Officials: 3-year-old shot in the face inside South Philadelphia home

A 3-year-old boy was shot Sunday night in South Philadelphia, officials say. 

The mother of the victim told investigators she was walking down the 1500 block of Taney Street, just after 5 p.m. Sunday, carrying her son when she heard two or three gunshots nearby. She realized, looking at the boy, he had been shot in the cheek.

The child was initially taken by a Good Samaritan, Meeka Outlaw, along with the child’s mother, to the Philadelphia Fire Department Engine 47 at Grays Ferry Avenue and 31st Street.

"I just saw a mom that was in distress and I’m a mother, too," Outlaw said. "Seeing the girl running up the street with the baby and blood, it just, it does something. I guess it was just a mom instinct."


Outlaw spoke with police at Engine 47, after her quick-thinking and help of first responders likely saved the 3-year-old boy’s life, moments after he was shot in the face.

Outlaw says it all happened in seconds, as she was unloading her car of groceries near the scene and planning to go get gas.

"As I was on the phone calling the ambulance, that’s when she was like, ‘He’s not breathing,’" Outlaw explained. "I put her in the car and I realized I didn’t have enough gas."

Outlaw says she knew she could make it to the fire station and told 911 operators that’s where she was heading.

First responders immediately jumped in to stabilize him and rushed him to CHOP.

Police say they gathered evidence during a search that leads them to believe the shooting happened inside a home, not on the street. It is still unclear what led to the child being shot.

Outlaw says she never spoke to the mom about what happened and did not know her personally. "I’m hoping he’s okay, because I have a 1-year-old. I’m a schoolteacher. If hope he’s okay."

An investigation into the shooting is underway.