2nd suspect in Nikolette Rivera death identified, confesses

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Philadelphia Police confirm the second suspect arrested in the shooting of 2-year-old Nikolette Rivera, 25-year-old Tavon Thomas, has confessed to firing the shots that killed the little girl and wounded her mother and another man who was cleaning carpets in the home at the time. 

Police arrested Thomas in Philadelphia on Wednesday. They say he and other suspect thought the wounded man was the little girl’s father.

The confession follows the arrest of another man connected to Sunday’s shooting, 30-year-old Freddie Perez. He was arraigned at 1:30 a.m. and was charged with murder and nearlty a dozen counts of attempted murder for two shootings on Sunday, police say: the first on Clearfield Street; the second, blocks away, on Water Street, where Nikolette was killed.

The girl’s grandmother and other children were also home at the time of the shooting.

Perez was on probation and has about a half-dozen drug-related convictions. 

He has been arrested more than a dozen times before.

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