FT. LAUDERDALE (CBS4) – An elderly Ft. Lauderdale man accused of shooting a young boy following a bit of horse-play with a football will have to stay behind bars, at least for now.
During a hearing Monday, a judge denied bond for 79-year old James McIvery who is charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. A second hearing will be held on Tuesday, in which McIvery’s lawyer will seek a bond reduction.
During the hearing, a lawyer representing McIvery told the judge he takes care of his disabled daughter who is basically homebound. McIvery’s cousin will take care of the woman in his absence.
The shooting happened late Sunday just before 5:30 p.m. According to police, several kids had repeatedly knocked on the door McIvery’s apartment, located in the 700 block of NW 12th Terrace.
McIvery reportedly told detectives that kids had been harassing him throughout the day and he’d told them several times to leave him alone. In frustration, McIvery allegedly ran out of his apartment with a hand gun and fired two shots into the ground in an effort to scare them off. On of the rounds struck 12-year-old Travis Neal in the stomach.
McIvery said he never meant to shoot the child.
Marcus Boone, 14, told police he was walking home from a football game with some friends from a game of football when somebody in their group threw the ball at McIvery’s apartment.
“One of us threw it at the window. So he ran back to get the ball,” Boone said, referring to Neal, who his friends call TJ.
Apparently, the ball hitting the window was the last straw for McIvery who reportedly came out with his gun.
“The man came outside and we all was running that way,” Boone said. “He started shooting that way and he must have hit TJ.”
The victim’s cousin, Jasmine Lewis, said “he ran home and said he was shot. We didn’t believe him at first and then we saw blood.”
Neal’s family says he had surgery at Broward General for internal bleeding but that the bullet will remain permanently lodged in his liver.
“He’s not a bad child. He wants to be a football player,” says his uncle Virgil Brown.
McIvery’s neighbors say they are sympathetic to his plight because he has endured years of kids banging on his door.
“If they aren’t kicking his door, they are kicking his window. The man got tired of it,’ says Robin White.
“He’s an old man. He lives by himself and takes care of his special needs kid. They are terribly bad,” says Robert Thomas.