*In what could only be called senseless violence 7-year-old Taalib Pecantte was shot and killed in a car to car shooting in Los Angeles as he was riding home with his mother and her friend.
Los Angeles police have yet to apprehend the four male suspects who were described by witnesses as wearing hoodies and in a white car that sped from the scene. As of Tuesday, a $50,000 reward was being offered to help police to track down whoever killed the youngster. (Read/learn more about the reward and the case here.)
The grieving father is someone whom this writer is personally acquainted with so this one hits right at home folks.
Richard Pecantte (aka Abu Talib Hussain) had a very close relationship with his son and had signed him up to play football with the youth football league that rapper Snoop Lion sponsors in Compton, Calif. in an effort to keep him out of trouble.
There are many in the community that are outraged at this act of violence that the police have characterized as gang related.
The most disturbing fact of all this is that there are so many kids and babies in many cities throughout country that are being caught up and becoming collateral damage in an ongoing violent war between local gangs.
The interesting thing about this case is the boyfriend of Taalib’s mother who had been the driver of the car, was the apparent target in the shooting and has gang ties. It is alleged that at the time of the incident the mother urged him to drive off immediately but instead he escaped out of the vehicle and ran only to get shot himself.
The mother then climbed into the driver’s seat and rushed her son to the emergency room at Kaiser hospital where they began to stabilize the young kid. He was transferred to Children’s Hospital where he eventually died.
A candle light vigil was held at Gonzales Park in Compton Calif., where the young boy played ball, and another vigil was held at Jim Gilliam park in the Baldwin Hills section of Los Angeles where hundreds of people turned out to pay their respects.
Taalib’s father spoked to the large gathering in Compton and said that even though his son was gone he would continue to volunteer his time to help coach the team, and spoke out to the killers “Look who you have affected -these babies.”
His burial service was held at American Islamic Institute Cemetery located in Rosemond, Calif., and was well attended.
This is not just a local problem, but this is happening all across America in every major city and small town.
We have to ask ourselves, where are we headed? And when is it going to stop?
This was one of God’s little angels that had his wings clipped by a small group of demons in our community.
Our thoughts and prayers sincerely go out to the Pecantte family.
May God’s peace and blessings be upon them all.
Southern California based Mohammed Mubarak, a portrait artist as well, can be contacted at [email protected] for your comments.