NEW YORK -- A man with a kitchen knife stabbed two young children, one fatally, in an elevator in a New York City apartment building on Sunday evening, police said. Police found Prince Joshua Avitto, 6, and a 7-year-old girl with stab wounds to their torsos at the building in Brooklyn's East New York neighborhood after responding to a 911 call.
Avitto is the cousin of Chicago Bulls power forward Taj Gibson, WGN-TV reported.
Gibson posted a photo of his cousin to Instagram saying: “They killed my lil super man. #rippj only two more weeks until your 7 birthday. Tears forever…this can’t be life #foreversuperman #babycuzz”
Avitto, who lived in the building next door, died of his injuries, police said.
The girl, identified by the New York Daily News as Mikayla Capers, was taken to a hospital in critical condition. The two children were good friends who were heading out to get an ice cream on a hot Sunday evening, the Daily News reported.
They were taking the elevator in 845 Schenck Ave., part of the Boulevard Houses, a city housing authority complex in the east New York section of Brooklyn, when they were attacked by a husky man wearing a gray sweat shirt who slashed the children with a heavy meat knife, police said. Police are looking for the suspected attacker, who was described as a heavy-set man.
“He took my pride and joy away,” P.J.’s father, Nicholas Avitto, told the New York Daily News, adding that he never got a chance to kiss his son.
His mother told the New York Post that her son was just 16 days from turning 7.
“They done killed my baby,” the mother, who did not give her name, said outside Brookdale Hospital. “His birthday was in 16 days! Lord, they done killed my baby!”
Police Commissioner Bill Bratton told reporters that investigators are working on a sketch of the suspect, last seen fleeing the building, going east. Bratton said it’s possible the suspect is the same person who stabbed a teen to death a few blocks away on Friday night.
Reuters, WGN-TV, Los Angeles Times
— Taj Gibson (@TajGibson22) June 2, 2014