D.C. boy shot in the head by stray bullet released from hospital
WASHINGTON (WJLA) – Though a 9-year-old D.C. boy who was shot in the head nearly three months ago had to spend Christmas in the hospital, he was released just in time to ring in the New Year.
Jaydan Stancil was struck in the head by a flying bullet meant for someone else on Oct. 3, while he was playing outside the Mayfair Mansions apartment complex in Northeast. With no time to wait for an ambulance to arrive, Metropolitan Police officers rushed the boy to the hospital, where doctors gave him just 45 minutes to live.
But Jaydan proved to be a fighter; he survived numerous surgeries and countless hours of therapy. With a bullet still lodged in his brain and his legs partially paralyzed, Jaydan is now strong enough to return home. He walked out of MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital on his own Wednesday.
“Jaydan, what are you thinking right now?” 7 On Your Side Investigative Reporter Kimberly Suiters asked.
“Home,” he answered.
Home is problematic right now. Returning to Mayfair Mansions is not an option.
“That would be the last place I go,” said Jaydan’s mother, Monique Nichols.
“I don’t feel safe around there no more,” Jaydan added.
Immediately after the shooting, many city officials—from Mayor Vincent Gray and the D.C. Council to Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier—offered to help the family in any way they could. But new housing has not happened.
“It’s very difficult. It’s very disappointing,” Nichols said. “I pay tax dollars, there’s constituent service funds, there’s all this money from the traffic tickets and red light cameras, and you mean to tell me you can’t help a child that most have considered a miracle baby? Shot in the head, he survived it. All he need is a home.”
For now, home may be a hotel or a friend’s house, but after three months, one bullet and one courageous kid, it’s no longer the hospital.
Councilwoman Alexander responded to 7 On Your Side Wednesday. She said she has spoken with Chief Lanier and the D.C. Housing Authority. They say in circumstances where there is a public housing threat, that qualifies someone to get a housing voucher. Councilwoman Alexander hopes that can happen for Jaydan’s family within the next few weeks.
His family and community continue to rally around Jaydan through a gofundme page, set up to help with mounting medical bills and the search for a new home in a safer neighborhood. So far, more than $17,000 has been raised.
Jaydan plans to sip cider on New Year’s Eve and play basketball as soon as possible.