The father of a baby who was critically wounded in a shooting last month allegedly used his son as a “human shield” while attempting to buy drugs with counterfeit money in the city’s Hunting Park section, a top prosecutor said Tuesday.
Nafes Monroe, 25, was arrested Saturday and charged with endangering the welfare of a child and recklessly endangering another person for having 11-month old Yazeem Jenkins in the car with him when a gunman opened fire and struck the boy four times, including in the head and chest.
Anthony Voci, head of the District Attorney’s Office Homicide Unit, said at the time of the shooting that Monroe was wanted on a probation violation warrant stemming from a 2013 gun conviction.
Monroe, his girlfriend, another man, and the baby were in the car at the time of the shooting around 7:50 p.m. on Oct. 19 in the 700 block of West Luzerne Street.
The alleged shooter, Francisco Ortiz, 29, was arrested and charged with attempted murder and related offenses.
Monroe, who lived in the 4900 block of North Camac Street, drove the child to a house before taking him to a hospital and fleeing, Voci said at a Tuesday afternoon news conference.
“He was using counterfeit money to purchase drugs, knowing that counterfeit money is something that is very upsetting to drug dealers, and when they find out they are being burned with counterfeit money, they act violently,” Voci said.
This was not the first time Monroe had taken his son with him while buying drugs with fake money, some of which was found in the car by police, Voci said.
“Our investigation has led us to believe that he intentionally had his child with him when he was making such types of purchases, with the idea or belief that if someone saw that he had a child in the car, that they would not fire upon him,” Voci said. “A 'human shield’ is probably the term that I would use.”
Ortiz, the alleged shooter, also is accused of supplying an AK-47 rifle used in a shooting the next day that killed 2-year-old Nikolette Rivera in Kensington.
Ortiz had a pending gun case at the time he was arrested.
Staff writer Robert Moran contributed to this article.