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14-Year-Old Boy Shot in Head in Bushwick

By  Patrick Hedlund Fred Dreier and Paul DeBenedetto | June 28, 2012 7:24am | Updated on June 28, 2012 12:59pm

Lupe Estrella helped 14-year-old Akeal Christopher after he was shot in the head.
Lupe Estrella helped 14-year-old Akeal Christopher after he was shot in the head.
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DNAinfo/Fred Dreier

BROOKLYN — A 14-year-old boy was in critical condition after being shot in the head on a Bushwick street late Wednesday, authorities said.

Akeal Christopher was walking at the corner of Cornelia Street and Evergreen Avenue about 10:55 p.m. with a group of friends, when another group approached him and asked if he was part of a "crew," police and friends said.

The boy turned to run away with his friends and was shot once in the head. He was taken to Brookdale Hospital with life-threatening injuries, the NYPD said.

Police said the teen may have been walking home from a party at the time of the shooting.

A woman who heard the shots and raced from her apartment to help Christopher described the horrifying moments following the shooting. Lupe Estrella, 48, said she heard four shots and looked outside her child's window to see teens running away from the scene.

Christopher was lying on his back, apparently suffering from a seizure, Estrella said.

Estrella, who said she's had emergency medical training, ran to the boy. A young woman stood over him, screaming for help. "By the time I got to him there was no movement at all," she said. "There was blood behind his head and blood was really coming out of his right ear."

While neighors propped up Christopher's head with beach towels, Estrella performed CPR on the boy until he began to move his eyes, she said. As she worked to help him, neighbors surrounded them, and one boy reached into Christopher's pocket and used his cell phone to call his family with the terrible news.

Shortly after Christopher seemed to regain consciousness, paramedics arrived. The boy squeezed Estrella's fingers in response to her voice.

Estrella couldn't sleep Wednesday night, she told DNAinfo. "Every time I close my eyes I see that boy," she said. Estrella visited Brookdale Hospital on Thursday morning. She said Christopher's mother was "hysterical."

Estrella's daugther, Nicole Cabrera, 28, helped her mother tend to the boy. "I couldn't talk. I couldn't move. I was lost," said Cabrera. "We've been up since it happened. None of us can sleep."

There have been no arrests, and the investigation is ongoing, police said.