The mother of the 12-year-old boy who was senselessly shot dead while he was eating in a parked car with relatives was too grief-stricken to speak at a press conference at the scene of the shooting Friday, where community leaders gathered to demand an end to the rampant violence.
Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso said the devastated mother, Suzette Lewin, had planned to speak but could not. She walked towards the podium slumped over with her family holding her up.
Lewin sat in a green chair during the press conference while she was consoled by family and friends.
“She’s just out of it,” Donnie Henry, a good friend of the mother, told The Post after the press conference.
“I watched her son grow and he’s a beautiful kid. He is a gem,” she said, still speaking in the present tense. “He’s a gem.”
“She’s just devastated. She’s at a loss for words. She hasn’t really spoken all day,” Henry said.
12-year-old Kade Lewin, who lived in Flatlands with his mother, was shot in the head while eating in the passenger seat of a car at East 56th Street and Linden Boulevard in East Flatbush just after 7:45 p.m. Thursday, police said. He was transported to Kings County Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Inside the vehicle was Kade’s 20-year-old cousin in the driver’s seat and 8-year-old cousin Kylie Thomas in the back, identified by her father who declined to give his name Friday.
The older cousin was shot multiple times, but is expected to survive, authorities said. Kylie was uninjured in the shooting.
“I’m trying to hold on for my family, my daughter. It happened all of a sudden,” Kylie’s father said.
“It happened right in front of her, right in front of her face,” he said. “They were watching a movie and she just remembers gunshots.”
One witness, who gave her name as Rodde, said she heard 7 to 10 shots ring out on Thursday night. She said she quickly threw on a robe and jacket and ran towards the scene, where she saw Lewin holding her dead son in her arms.
“I can see that he was dead. I saw him in front of the passenger seat with blood on his head. The mother was touching him and telling me ‘help me, help me’ but there was nothing I could do because I could see the child was dead,” she said outside her home.
“She don’t know what to do,” she said about the boy’s mom. “She kept going up and down and touching the baby’s face. She kept saying ‘my baby, my baby. Help me. He’s only 12-years-old!’”
“This is not supposed to happen especially to a child,” she said.
At the press conference, New York state senator Zellnor Myrie called on New York State to allocate funds to keep communities safe.
“Our hearts ache, bleed that we had this boy taken from us. Today, we mourn. Tomorrow the state has to put its money where its mouth is,” he said. “We have a $216 billion budget that is late…You want to talk to me about public safety, you want to lecture our community about public safety, put the damn money in the community period.”
Neither Kade nor the older relative are believed by police to have been the intended target of the gunman, sources told The Post.
Detectives were investigating whether the shooter may have thought someone else was inside the vehicle, the sources added.