WILKES-BARRE — Javette Uggiano drew the line when her son, 19-year-old William “Chilly” Uggiano, wanted to breed mice to feed his three snakes.
She also told him “no” when he wanted to buy an alligator. She does plan to make him tacos when he is released from Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, where he is recovering from five gunshot wounds.
City police on Monday released no new details about their investigation with state police and the Luzerne County District Attorney’s Office. No charges have been filed.
While investigators have remained tight-lipped, a search warrant filed with District Judge Martin Kane on Monday afternoon says a black man wearing a long-sleeve, light-colored shirt was seen in the area at the time when Chilly was shot.
According to the search warrant affidavit, an officer on East Northampton Street heard gunfire at 10:50 p.m. Saturday and found Uggiano laying on Wayne Street near South Grant Street.
The teen was able to tell police he did not know the name of the person who shot him but had seen the shooter “around town before.”
Uggiano said he was “just walking and the guy shot him,” the affidavit says.
Several spent .45 caliber shell casings were recovered at the intersection.
Man spotted in area
An off-duty police officer in the area said he spotted a man wearing a long-sleeve, light-colored shirt hiding behind bushes in the area of Wayne and South Grant streets. When an officer shined a spotlight in the area, the man ran down Wayne Street as the spotlight moved to a different area.
The unknown man was last seen walking through a muffler shop’s parking lot on East Northampton Street.
Uggiano suffered multiple gunshot wounds to his torso and head. He has responded to his mother’s commands by opening his eyes and squeezing her hand.
“I’m praying to God my baby is getting out of this,” Javette Uggiano said when talking about her son with her husband, William, outside their home on Park Avenue on Monday. “I told him, ‘Chilly, you got to fight like you never fought before.’”
Javette and her husband said police have not provided them with any updates about the investigation. They believe their son was walking alone on his way to a friend’s house for a party when he was gunned down.
“Everybody around here loves Chilly; he didn’t have a problem with anyone,” Javette said. “He isn’t a bad boy; he’s a good boy.”
Uggiano, a 2013 graduate of Wilkes-Barre Area’s GAR High School, did not have a job but babysat a nephew and mowed a neighbor’s lawn, his parents said. He owns three snakes: an Albino Corn snake, a Red Tail Boa and a Bull Python, as pets. His father helped him build cages for the reptiles.
Ever since Uggiano could walk, his mother said, he was interested in reptiles and insects. He kept three mating beetles in a jar, and when he was younger, brought home 14 bullfrogs he caught from a pond near South Empire Street.
“Other kids his age are interested in cars, music and girls,” Javette said. “Not Chilly, he could tell you anything about reptiles and insects and what country they came from. That’s my Chilly.”
Since the shooting, Javette and William said they have been flooded with visits and phone calls from family and friends.
“Miracles do happen,” she said. “I have faith in God.”
A prayer vigil is scheduled tonight at 6 in front of the family’s house on Park Avenue.