A 23-year-old man was behind bars Tuesday on suspicion of killing a year-old girl who was shot in a crib at her family’s Compton home.
Ray Howard Patterson was arrested around 2:30 p.m. Monday near Bullis Road and Rosecrans Avenue in Compton in connection with the Feb. 9 killing of Autumn Johnson, according to the sheriff’s department.
Patterson is being held without bail, and he could appear in court Wednesday if he is charged by the District Attorney’s Office.
Autumn was asleep in a crib when the driver of a blue four-door Chevrolet Impala stopped in front of the converted garage where her family lived in the 300 block of North Holly Avenue, according to the sheriff’s department. A man got out and opened fire, and the baby was shot in the face.
Sheriff’s deputies rushed her to St. Francis Medical Center in Lynwood, but doctors were unable to save the infant.
Investigators said there were two men in the car, which was last seen being driven south on Holly Avenue. They believe the shooting was gang-related, and that the infant’s father was likely the target of the shooting.
The search is continuing for the driver of the car.
News of the arrest came just hours after the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors formalized a $25,000 reward for information leading to the girl’s killers. The city of Compton and the FBI have also posted $25,000 rewards each, for a total reward of $75,000.
“The senseless and tragic death of baby Autumn has left her family and community devastated,” Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said.
Autumn’s parents are expecting their second child. A funeral service for Autumn was held on Saturday.
Ridley-Thomas asked anyone with more information about the attack to call sheriff’s homicide Detectives Jonas Shipe or Todd Anderson at (323) 890- 5500 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.
—City News Service