The 15-year-old suspect accused in the shooting death of an 11-year-old girl in New York City while on a scooter has pleaded not guilty Monday during his arraignment.
Matthew Godwin, entered not guilty pleas at Bronx Supreme Court on charges of murder in the second degree, manslaughter in the first degree and criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree following the killing of Kyhara Tay last week.
Godwin was remanded and is due back in court on Wednesday for a follow-up appearance.
Tay was gunned down by a stray bullet in the Bronx on May 16, the New York Police Department said. Godwin was taken into custody while at a hotel with his mother.
Authorities have also identified Omar Bojang, 18, as the suspect they believe was driving the scooter from which the shooting occurred. Officials urged him to surrender to authorities.
Tay was struck in the stomach but was the unintended target of the shooting, the NYPD said. The target was a 13-year-old boy who was not hit.
"Instead of hitting his intended target however, he ended the life of a totally innocent, completely uninvolved 11-year-old girl," NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell told reporters. "I won't say she was in the wrong place because why shouldn't an 11-year-old child be able to stand outside in broad daylight."
The 13-year-old spoke with the NYPD but investigators have not determined a motive for the shooting, officials said. The weapon used had not been found.
Tay was with a family member when the gunfire erupted just before 5 p.m. Monday near Fox Street.
"We're talking about an 11-year-old girl with her whole future — her whole family devastated with this loss. At this point, we cannot bring her back," her aunt, Norka Sanchez, said earlier this week, Fox New York reported.
In 2019, when Godwin was 12, he was assaulted by a gang member and was shot Jan. 6, NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig said.