Child Shot in Drive-By Declared Brain Dead, Case Now a Homicide

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Authorities in Kansas City, Missouri, are now investigating the shooting that left a four-year-old boy brain dead as a homicide.

The child, Aydan Perea, was declared brain dead by doctors at Children's Mercy Hospital on Monday night. His family says that Perea remains connected to a life support system until his organs have been donated.

There is no word on when that process may be complete.

Related: Four-Year-Old Child Shot in Driveway

The child and his father were visiting relatives on Saturday night at a house at 24th and Denver on Kansas City’s east side - a location identified by KCPD officials as a violent crime "hot spot" - when a gunman pulled up to the house and opened fire in an apparent drive-by shooting, hitting Aydan Perea in the head just after his father put him in his car seat.

Police have located the vehicle they believe was used in the shooting, but still haven't made any arrests or identified any suspects.

On Tuesday, Perea's mother, Lindsey Conner, paid a visit to the neighborhood where the shooting happened. There she met Jody Palmer for the first time - Palmer was the first one to reach the child after he had been shot while sitting in his car seat.

"He was innocent and he was just lifeless," said Palmer. "All my life I've never seen nothing so devastating. I'm unable to eat, I'm unable to sleep because I see this baby in my head. You know it's hard."

Conner says that her world has simply "stopped."

"I lost my baby. He's left a seven-year-old brother behind," said the anguished Conner. She says that her son has no brain activity now, and was pronounced essentially dead on Monday.

"But he's gonna save other people, so that's fine," said Conner.

Anyone with information in the case is urged to call the TIPS Hotline at (816) 474-TIPS.

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