Marcos Antonio Echartea allegedly shot a 10-month old baby girl after her mother rejected his romantic advances during a party in California over the weekend, police said.
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said the baby, identified as Fayth Percy, was in critical but stable condition after undergoing a surgery to have bullet fragments removed from her head, the Fresno Bee reported. She was shot while she sat on her mother’s lap in the front passenger seat of a car Sunday morning.
The detectives arrested 23-year-old Marcos Antonio Echartea at the house on suspicion of three counts of attempted murder in connection with the violent incident.
During a news conference over the weekend, Fresno Police Chief Jerry told reporters the suspect had “no regard for human life, even a baby.”
The Police officials said Fayth’s mother, identified as 18-year-old Deziree Menagh met the suspect a week ago and crossed paths with him again at the party, where he repeatedly and persistently pursued her. In the hours leading up to the shooting, Echartea tried to grab her hand and later attempted to get the mother to sit in his lap, according to the Los Angeles Times. She resisted each of his advances, which eventually prompted her to leave to the event.
“It was very apparent that he wanted a relationship with her,” Dyer said.
Menagh and her male friend were about to leave the gathering early Sunday when they saw Echartea stalking toward their vehicle.
“At some point when he got close, he pulled out a handgun and fired three rounds into the driver’s side window, which was up,” Dyer said. “One of those rounds struck baby Fayth on the side of the head as she was being held by her mother.”[
He added that authorities have “every reason to believe that Marcos knew that baby Fayth was inside the vehicle” when he unleashed several rounds into the car.
They quickly rushed the infant to a nearby hospital and Echartea was arrested the same day. He’s also a suspect in another shooting, similarly “over a female.”
According to the Police, Echartea fired several rounds inside the home of his ex-girlfriend’s current boyfriend and nearly struck a child there as well.
“We are hoping and praying that baby Faythi is able to survive this injury, as well as make a full recovery,” Dyer said. “I know the parents are broken. They’re hurting.”