Toddler wounded in 'targeted' Atlanta shooting, police say

Atlanta police are searching for the driver of a blue Kia Optima who investigators said shot into a car Wednesday, wounding a 2-year-old boy in southwest Atlanta.

The Atlanta Police Department said the shooting happened around 4 p.m. near Peters Street and Chapel Road near the Morehouse and Spelman campuses.

Investigators said the father had just left a barbershop in the 200 block of Peters Street in the Castleberry Hill neighborhood and was headed south of Peters Street.

"What we have determined is there was a car following them," said Atlanta Police Deputy Chief Charles Hampton Jr.

Police said the driver of the Kia targeted the victim's car. Both cars stopped at the light at Chapel Road.

Police investigate a shooting in the Castleberry Hill neighborhood on Wednesday.

Police investigate a shooting in the Castleberry Hill neighborhood on Wednesday. (FOX 5 Atlanta)

"The car pulled alongside on the passenger's side and began to open fire, striking the 2-year-old that was in the back seat," Deputy Chief Hampton said.

The driver of the Kia then fled south of Peters Street.

The toddler's father drove to a fire station about a mile-and-a-half south from the shooting scene. Firefighters there took the 2-year-old to a local hospital. He was in critical, but stable condition as of early Wednesday evening.

FOX 5 Atlanta saw the victim's car with the passenger-side window shot out sitting in front of that fire station.

Crime scene tape surrounds a car parked in the driveway of an Atlanta fire station along Lee Street after a report of a child shot on August 3, 2022. (FOX 5)

A motive behind the shooting is still under investigation.

"It appears to be targeted incident. I'm not sure if they know one another, but it appears that shooters, in fact, wanted to shoot the occupants in that vehicle," Deputy Chief Hampton said.

Only the father and son were in the vehicle at the time of the shooting, police said. Their names have not been released.

Police are asking anyone who may have seen a blue Kia Optima in the area or has any information about the shooting to call 911.