A Michigan man who shot and injured a 6-year-old Black boy after he told the minor and his friends to leave his lawn was sentenced to 40 months to 15 years in prison after he pleaded no contest in connection with the June 2021 incident.
According to MLive, Washtenaw County Trial Judge Darlene O’Brien handed Ryan Cuong Le-Nguyen the sentence on April 14. The sentence also came after Le-Nguyen pleaded no contest to one count of discharging a firearm in a building causing injury and felony firearms.
Le-Nguyen also faced other charges including assault with intent to murder, assault with intent to commit great bodily harm, discharging a firearm in a building, and two counts of felony firearms. Those charges were, however, dismissed after he pleaded no contest.
The minor that Le-Nguyen is accused of shooting and injuring was his neighbor. The 6-year-old boy and two other minors told the court that they were playing “monkey in the middle” when the ball landed on Le-Nguyen’s lawn.
The minors said Le-Nguyen came out of his home with a hammer and kicked the ball away. He also told the children to leave his lawn. The witnesses said they subsequently went next door to notify the 6-year-old boy’s older brother about what had happened while one of them went for the ball.
The victim and his older brother then went to Le-Nguyen’s home and knocked on his door before the 6-year-old threw Gatorade on his door and fled, the minors testified, adding that they heard what appeared to be a gunshot afterward. The 6-year-old was struck in the upper arm, MLive reported.
The child’s parents called 911 after the minors notified them about the shooting. Le-Nguyen also called authorities to report an attempted break-in.
“Even though this was very reprehensible conduct, adults should be the ones protecting children not shooting at them, I do believe the sentencing agreement is appropriate given all the circumstances,” said O’Brien.