After a manhunt on Friday, an underaged illegal immigrant accused of shooting a tourist in New York City was apprehended by U.S. authorities.
U.S. Marshals arrested 15-year-old Jesus Alejandro Rivas-Figueroa of Venezuela Friday afternoon at a home in Yonkers, New York. As he was being arrested, the teenager who felt adult enough to fire a gun and injure someone broke down in tears.
According to officials, police responded to a shooting inside JD Sports around 7 p.m. Thursday. The suspects were stealing clothes and other merchandise, placing them into a bag.
When two of the three suspects entered the lobby, they were confronted by a female loss prevention employee who asked for a receipt and recovered the stolen items. Rivas-Figueroa pulled out a gun, aiming for the employee, but missed and hit an innocent bystander. The incident was caught on surveillance.
NYPD Chief of Patrol John Chell held a news briefing Friday, providing details of the incident. He said that Rivas-Figueroa fired at an officer, but the officer did not return fire due to the number of people in the area and continued to pursue the suspect.
Rivas-Figueroa managed to escape officers by running into the subway, police reported.
The victim, Taliele Ribeiro Lemos, told Eyewitness News reporter Jim Dolan that she heard a loud noise and felt a pain in her body. She soon discovered that she had been shot in the leg.
The 38-year-old has since been released from the hospital. Lemos left Brazil due to the country being dangerous. She now feels unsafe in America as well.
“I always felt safe to walk around here in New York, now I’m a little scared,” she said. “You don’t expect this to happen here.”
According to authorities, another 15-year-old was arrested shortly after the shoplifting incident but was released and a 16-year-old was arrested Friday morning.
Rivas-Figueroa is also the suspect in a January armed robbery in the Bronx and another shooting in Midtown where no one was hurt, a police source told CBS New York.
Rivas-Figueroa was charged as an adult.
NYPD Commissioner Edward Caban had a message for criminals thinking of putting anyone in the city in harm’s way.
“If you think you can threaten the lives of the very people who keep us safe, if you think you can put others at deadly risk and get away with it, then think again. We will never stop pursuing you. We will find you, and we will arrest you,” said Caban.