A 36-year-old man with a long criminal history was charged Wednesday with having a role in the shooting of a 2-year-old boy in a south Minneapolis home earlier this week.
Kendall Hampton, of Minneapolis, was charged in Hennepin County District Court with felony child endangerment and being a felon in possession of a firearm in connection with the boy being shot in the face Monday in an apartment in the 1500 block of S. Lasalle Avenue.
Hampton told police he was asleep and unsure how the boy ended up being shot, the charges read.
Hampton remains jailed in lieu of $100,000 bail ahead of a court appearance Thursday. Court records do not list an attorney for him.
The boy, whose name has yet to be released, was hospitalized in critical but stable condition. Medical providers reported that he suffered a “through and through” gunshot wound to his left cheek.
Hampton’s criminal history in Minnesota includes six convictions for theft, three each for domestic assault, disorderly conduct and receiving stolen property and once each for burglary, a weapons offense and drunken driving.
According to the criminal complaint:
Officers responded to a 911 call from a woman who told them she was sleeping in the same room when she awoke to the toddler screaming and crying. Hampton was in the same room at the time, she said. Hampton and the woman were watching the boy while the child’s mother was at work.
Police encountered Hampton in the apartment building lobby. At first, he claimed he was a neighbor who was checking to see what the commotion was about. Officers told Hampton to stay put and give a statement, but he left. Reached by phone, he gave police evasive answers about his whereabouts.
Once under arrest, Hampton said that he was in the bedroom when the gun went off and that he had been drinking that night. He added that he doesn’t know how the boy ended up being shot.
When he went to sleep, Hampton said, he left the gun on the windowsill next to his bed.
The woman said she told Hampton that “he should put his gun up high where the children wouldn’t be able to get to it, but [he] indicated that he wanted to keep it close,” the charges read.
After the shooting, Hampton told police, he took off with the gun because he knew he was not supposed to have any firearms.
He said he went to the building’s third floor and left the gun near an apartment front door. Police retrieved the weapon and were subjecting it to forensic testing in an effort to determine who fired the gun.