Known Fresno gang member in court for shooting little girl

Three years ago a 10 year old girl was shot in the head after police say gang members went after the wrong car.
October 29, 2013 5:33:37 PM PDT
Three years ago a 10 year old girl was shot in the head after police say gang members went after the wrong car, leaving her critically wounded.

Antonio Skinner was hit several times while sheltering his 6-year-old son and 10-year-old daughter. His daughter was hit above the eye and survived but is now in special Ed and unable to do many things her friends can.

Antonio Skinner left the courtroom after sobbing through much of his testimony Tuesday.

Fresno police say in the summer of 2010, the father of two was the target of angry gang members ready to settle a fight. Only they got the wrong car.

Cameras were not allowed in court. Skinner could hardly get through answering questions about his now teenage daughters permanent injuries. She was shot in the head.

When asked how she is now, he said, "She is blessed she is here. Her issue has brought a lot of demons into my home. Her feelings and emotions. To feel left out because she can't play sports, and her finger is gone. I don't have any answers to tell her why this happened to her."

The suspected gunman, Shalander Givens was arrested shortly after the shooting. Police said 20 bullets were fired from an assault rifle. His first jury trial ended earlier this year in a hung jury. If convicted, Givens is facing several life sentences.

"In a case like this the evidence is pretty strong," said ABC30 Legal Analyst Tony Capozzi. "The victim is driving his car with his children in the car. One is hit by a bullet and severely severely injured. I think the sympathy is with the victim in this case."

But the defense attorney turned her attention to Skinner, saying he is not the family man he is portraying to be.

Facebook pictures the victim posted of guns and marijuana were shown to the jury. Skinners criminal past was brought up too. ABC30 Legal Analyst Tony Capozzi says this is a risky move.

"Going after the victim as to his prior record I don't think is going to help the defense whatsoever," explained Capozzi. "Indeed I think it could hurt."

Police believe the victim's car was targeted because it was similar to a car involved in a gang fight days earlier.

Shalander givens was on parole at the time. So he is also facing an additional felony count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.


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