13-year-old Chicago teen featured in anti-violence video in critical condition, shot by stray bullet

A Chicago teenager who appeared in an award-winning anti-violence video was in critical condition in a hospital on Sunday after he was shot in the back by a stray bullet near his home on Chicago’s West Side, police and local media said.

Zarriel Trotter, 13, who police said was shot Friday night, appears in a minute long YouTube video with several third- through seventh-grade African-American boys discussing their feelings toward gun violence and homicides.

He was shot in the lower back, close to his spine, at about 8.30 pm, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Zarriel Trotter was shot in the lower back Friday night near his Chicago home   He was on his way back from playing basketball with friends

Police said Trotter was not the intended target of gunfire, which broke out after a fight between two groups of people turned violent. Pictured: Police investigate the scene

‘I don’t want to live around in my community where I got to keep on hearing and hearing people keep on getting shot, people keep on getting killed,’ the seventh-grader said in the public service announcement, titled ‘Black is Human.’

The video ends with the written statement: ‘The loss of a black boy is a loss for America.’

Police said Trotter was not the intended target of gunfire, which broke out after a fight between two groups of people turned violent.

The video, which begins with 2013 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was awarded an Advocacy Media Award, according to the Facebook page of Burrell Communications, which created the video.

‘Our hearts go out to Zarriel and his family,’ the company posted on Facebook. ‘We wish him a speedy recovery.’

Trotter had surgery on Saturday at Mount Sinai Hospital and remains in ‘critical condition’, according to the Chicago Tribune.

He was shot about a half-mile from both his school and his home.

Trotter’s Catalyst Circle Rock Charter School principal said told the paper: ‘Every morning he greets me with a big smile on his face, which makes my day.

‘I feel horrible that this happened to him.’

She added: ‘He is a valued member of our school community. We love him. He’s our child. We want him to get better.’

The 13-year-old has attended the school for several years and has been involved in its male empowerment mentoring program, which includes meeting with influential men from the community said the principal.

About a week ago, four men – none of them students – were shot about a block from the school.

And the young boy’s great-uncle, Malkey Cobb, said his nephew was walking home after playing basketball with his friends when he got shot.

Cobb added that Trotter was a good kid and that it was ‘horrible that kids got shot up like this’.

And a fellow classmate told the paper that he was ‘adventurous and friendly’, liked to be outside playing basketball and is ‘a good student’.

Source: The DailyMail

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