2004-12-17 / Front Page

Rodman Receives Award

Three Rockaway teenagers are learning the hard way that guns are not toys after one of them accidentally shot himself in the leg while playing with a loaded handgun last Thursday evening.

Lashawn Francis and Arnold McCray, both 16, and a 15-year-old boy were toying with a Llama 9mm handgun in the basement at 461 Beach 66 Street, where McCray lives, when Francis fired a round into his right leg, according to court records.

In the panic after the shooting McCray allegedly told the 15-year-old, whose name was withheld because of his age, to get rid of the weapon before police arrived. But McCray’s mother, who was at home and heard the blast, had already dashed out to call 911, police said.

Police arrested all three teens after an investigation. Francis, of 448 Beach 67 Street, was taken to an area hospital to be treated for his wound. Detectives from the 100 Precinct recovered the handgun, which was wrapped in a shirt inside a dresser drawer at the 15-year-old’s home. The gun had seven rounds in the clip and one round between the clip and the chamber, according to court records.

McCray was released on his own recognizance at his arraignment on December 11. He is due back in Queens Criminal Court on January 11. The juvenile’s case was turned over to Queens Family Court.

Francis remained hospitalized as The Wave went to press. A law enforcement source said his arraignment would follow his discharge, which was expected late this week.

Janet Rodman, social studies teacher at M.S. 53, received the coveted Tractenburg Award on November 7, 2004. The award is given to the top UFT chapter leaders in the city.

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