There were five young men in all, waiting on a street corner in the Bronx on Monday — two on bicycles, two with guns, and all with a specific target in mind: a 19-year-old rival who was inside a bodega.
As the target emerged, police officials said, a street version of “hot potato” unfolded: a .40-caliber pistol went from one set of hands to another, settling with the youngest among them: Carvett Gentles.
Mr. Gentles was 16, and unlike the others did not have any prior arrests.
“We believe that they attempted to get the weapon to the shooter,” said Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, “because he had no criminal record. They were acting in concert.”
About a block away, Vada Vasquez, 15, and a friend were well along on their trip from Bronx Latin School to their homes.
About 3:45 p.m., the police said, Mr. Gentles stepped forward and fired at least six shots. One struck the 19-year-old intended target, Tyrone Creighton, ripping through his upper left shoulder, penetrating his lung. Another bullet hit Ms. Vasquez in the back of her head, above her left ear.