Man Accused of Shooting 8-Year-Old

An 8-year-old boy is home with his family two days after he was struck by a stray bullet.

Police apprehended a suspect who they say randomly fired a gun from his front porch and struck the 8-year-old boy on Friday.

Authorities arrested 55-year-old Wayne Snowden of the 300 block of South Hanover Street, North Coventry Township and charged him for aggravated assault for allegedly shooting the child, 8-year-old AJ Hanger, as he rode his bike with a friend around 5 p.m. Friday.

Police say Snowden was standing on his porch speaking with individuals inside the residence when he raised a handgun and fired a single shot in the direction of Coyne Alley.

The bullet struck Hanger in the leg as he passed the Pottstown Dance Theatre near the intersection of West Main Street and Coyne Alley, North Coventry Township.

"The defendant was extraordinarily reckless," said Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan. "The right to own firearms includes the responsibility to handle firearms safely."

Hanger was flown by medical helicopter to The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. He was eventually released late Saturday night.

"We are all grateful that this innocent child was not killed just a couple of days before Mother's Day," Hogan added.

Snowden was standing near the victim after the shooting, but he returned to his home when police arrived on the scene, according to officials.

An investigation revealed the shot came from the area near the suspect's residence and authorities recovered two handguns from Snowden's home.

"I want to reassure the community that the victim in this case was not specifically targeted," said North Coventry Township Police Chief Bob Schurr. "This was a case of irresponsible gun handling in its most tragic form."

Contact Us