Man arrested after shooting of 2-year-old child in Waterbury

Man charged with shooting 2-year-old appears in court
Published: Jun. 28, 2022 at 10:14 AM EDT
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WATERBURY, CT (WFSB) – Waterbury police arrested a man after a 2-year-old was shot last week.

The child was shot at a home on Pinecrest Drive last Tuesday, June 21.

Kharis Samuels, 20, of Waterbury, turned himself in to police Monday.

He faced a judge Tuesday.

Police say Samuels was visiting a friend when his gun accidentally went off, shooting his friend’s two-year-old brother.

Samuels drove off after it happened, something the state said is enough reason to set his bond at $1 million.

His Attorney, Erin Field, said while he does have a Waterbury address, he mostly lives in New York.

She argued his bond should be set at $750,000.

“He has no prior record, so while I understand the state’s position that he looked like he fled the state, he was told to leave the residence by the person that was there, the adult that was still there,” said Field.

According to the arrest warrant, Samuels was showing off his gun.

The victim’s brother said: “...while playing video games, Kharis bragged that he had a gun on him. Kharis showed the gun to him and he saw that it was a black semi-automatic gun.”

After the shooting happened, as the family was heading out to bring the 2-year-old to the hospital, another family member described seeing Kharis, saying: “When Kharis was running out, she heard him yelling back that it wasn’t his fault or something like that.”

Samuels is charged with assault first-degree, illegal discharge of a firearm, reckless endangerment first-degree, illegal transfer of pistol/revolver, criminal use of weapon, carrying a pistol without a permit, illegal possession of weapon in a motor vehicle, and risk of injury to a child.

In the end, the judge set the bond at $750,000.

Samuels is due back in court on July 13.

The child is in stable condition and is recovering at Connecticut Children’s in Hartford, police said.