THE state’s gun crime crisis reached a new level of sickening violence yesterday when a 15-year-old Glenfield boy was executed as he slept in his bed.
Brayden Dillon was asleep in his Glenfield home when a gunman kicked in the front door, rushed past his mother and two young siblings, aged one and seven, and shot Brayden in the head at close range about 6am.
Miraculously, he lived for a few hours before dying in hospital shortly after 11am.
Police believe his shooting is linked to the murder of 18-year-old Adam Abu-Mahmoud in July last year after a fight with other youths, allegedly including Brayden’s brother Joshua Dillon, also 18.
The chilling murder was one of three gun crimes in less than 12 hours — two of them involving children.
An 11-year-old girl was threatened with a handgun at her home in Whalan during a violent break and enter. And in Punchbowl, a young man was shot in the legs and backside and admitted to hospital.
Detectives said yesterday the other two gun crimes did not appear to be related to Brayden’s execution.
However, there is a real concern at the recent high-profile public shootings on the streets of Sydney.
“Reducing gun crime remains a major focus for NSW Police,” acting Deputy Commissioner Denis Clifford told The Saturday Telegraph.
“As long as there are illegal guns in the community we will continue to deal with gun crime and its consequences.”
Joshua Dillon, 20-year-old James Rivera and a 17-year-old boy who cannot be named because he was underage at the time have all been charged with the murder of Mr Abu-Mahmoud during a street brawl outside a convenience shop in Panania last July.
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Mr Dillon has strenuously denied any involvement in the stabbing murder.
Mr Clifford said yesterday: “We will be looking into why Brayden was targeted, but we are pretty sure it’s related to the murder last year.”
A series of messages shared on social media yesterday by a young woman who claimed to have known Brayden said the attack was “revenge” and he “should of (sic) seen this coming — been planned for six months.”
Brayden was found in the middle of Moresby Rd, Glenfield, just after 6am yesterday with a gunshot wound to the head. Police said the gunman, who they described as thin and aged between 18 and 20, had threatened Brayden’s mother before running up to the second floor where Brayden was asleep in bed and shot him in the head.
In a facts sheet tendered to Burwood Court last year, police claimed Mr Abu-Mahmoud’s murder started over an exchange of words between the victim and Brayden’s brother and two of his friends.
They claim Joshua Dillon was with Rivera and another person when they drove past a corner shop in Panania in a ute about 5.30pm on July 15.
It is alleged the trio were subjected to verbal insults by Mr Abu-Mahmoud and two other people.
Later, Mr Abu-Mahmoud came across the trio again and it is alleged that during a confrontation, he was fatally stabbed, dying in his father’s arms with his brother present.
There is no suggestion the Abu-Mahmoud family are involved in Brayden’s murder.
Following a spate of public shootings in Sydney over the past two years — including several tit-for-tat executions involving underworld figures — this latest outbreak of gun violence underlines the crisis facing NSW Police.
About 10pm on Thursday night, an 11-year-old girl was threatened with a gun while she sat on the front steps of her family’s home on Karangi Rd in Whalan.
Police said a teenage boy approached her with a gun and forced his way into the home. He is described as being of Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander appearance and is about 15 years old.
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Two hours earlier, police were called to Telopea St in Punchbowl after reports of someone being shot. A man known to police later checked himself into Bankstown hospitals with gunshot wounds that police believe were related to the Punchbowl incident.
Hitman Hamad Assad, 29, is gunned down in his driveway in front of his 12-year-old nephew in Georges Hall in Sydney’s southwest.
Ricardo “Cardo” Coleman, 20, dies after being shot in the neck after an alleged fight with a neighbour in Baulkham Hills.
Mafia kingpin Pasquale Barbaro is executed outside a friend’s home in Earlwood.
Assyrian gang associate Antonio Hermiz, 20, is shot dead in broad daylight at Wetherill Park in front of two horrified witnesses.
Father of three Qin Wu, 37, is shot dead at a Buddhist temple in Guildford.
Hell’s Angels figure Kemel Barakat, 29, is shot dead in bed in front of his lover in a unit in Mortlake in Sydney’s inner west.
15-year-old Brayden Dillon is shot in the head as he slept in his Glenfield home.