52° Good Morning
52° Good Morning
Long IslandSuffolk

Teen shot in park gets $12G to pay for medical bills

County Executive Steve Levy Thursday presented Wilson Batista Jr., the Brentwood teen shot while playing basketball in a park last summer, with a $12,457 check to help pay his medical bills.

The money, raised at a December gala in Deer Park hosted by the New Beginnings rehabilitation center, will help Batista's family pay for his treatment.

"He is getting stronger and that is encouraging," Levy said.

Indeed, Wilson mostly uses a wheelchair to get around but is walking more, said his mother, Ramona Batista. He said he plans to help his father, Wilson Batista Sr., remove the newly installed ramp at their Brentwood home.

"He's doing a lot better," Ramona Batista said. "He is walking more."

But medical bills are piling up for the Batistas. Wilson Batista Sr. is a custodian at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore and Ramona Batista quit her job at a perfume company to care for her son.

The Batista family has received financial assistance from Long Island Housing Services, which helped the family with its mortgage and negotiating with their insurance company.

No county taxpayer money was included in the funds delivered to the family Thursday.

Since Batista was shot June 15 while playing basketball at Timberline Park near his Brentwood home, Levy added patrols in and around the park, and the Islip Town Board approved installation of surveillance cameras.

Wilson lost his right eye in the shooting, for which Alexander A. Aguilar, 18, of Deer Park, stands charged with first-degree assault.

Thursday's meeting, in a conference room in Levy's 12th-floor Hauppauge office, became tense when Legis. Ricardo Montano arrived with the family.

Montano (D-Brentwood), who has served as a family spokesman since the June shooting and often clashes with Levy, was not invited to the event but came anyway, he said.

Levy shook hands with everyone in the room except Montano.

Latest Long Island News