Police identify 8-year-old boy killed when his KC home was sprayed with bullets

Eight-year-old Brian C. Bartlett was the child killed Sunday in Kansas City when his home was sprayed with dozens of bullets, police said Monday.

Brian was asleep in his bed when the gunfire erupted about 11:30 p.m. Saturday at the home in the 8300 block of Tracy Avenue, police said. The boy and his mother, who was seriously injured, were hit when their home was riddled with about two dozen bullets.

They were rushed to hospitals, and Brian was pronounced dead. He was weeks away from his ninth birthday.

His mother remained hospitalized Sunday with a gunshot wound to the leg. An updated condition was not available Monday.

Police said the investigation continues into the shooting. No information about a motive or suspect has been available.

Brian is the youngest homicide victim this year in Kansas City, according to data kept by The Star. He was one of at least five people under the age of 16 slain this year in the city, according to Kansas City Police Department data.

In a statement on Twitter, Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said the young boy was killed while he slept in bed.

Baker said Brian was exceptionally bright, loved playing with LEGOs and was excited about the start of school. His mother, the prosecutor said, had planned to take him to get a backpack Sunday.

“I know we are tired, even exasperated but we must also feel the outrage over this little boy’s death,” Baker said. “His short life ended and all of his future contributions to this community are gone too.”

Baker added: “Justice must not be denied!”

Anyone with information about the homicide is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).

Brian was the 11th person slain in the city in the last two weeks. That includes the death of 25-year-old Erin Langhofer, whose fatal shooting in the Crossroads Arts District during a public event brought renewed calls to end the city’s gun violence.

Brian’s killing marked Kansas City’s 90th homicide of the year, according to The Star’s data, which includes police shootings.

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Robert A. Cronkleton gets up very early in the morning to bring readers breaking news about crime, transportation and weather at the crack of dawn. He’s been at The Star since 1987 and now contributes data reporting and video editing.