'It’s appalling; it's happened too much,' neighbor says after 2-year-old shot while playing near French Quarter in New Orleans _lowres

Advocate staff photo by MATT SLEDGE: Crime scene near where a 2-year-old girl was shot while playing outside Governor Nicholls Street on Monday.

A two-year-old girl was shot in the leg while playing outside on Governor Nicholls Street just north of the French Quarter on Monday night.

The toddler was outside playing with other children and adults when an unknown male approached and fired two shots before fleeing north, Officer Hilal Williams said. She was taken to the hospital.

Mark Spiers said he was visiting a friend on the leafy block just north of North Rampart Street when the shooting happened. He and the friends had just gone inside after hanging out in front of their house when two shots rang out.

“I heard, bam, bam!” said Spiers, and then the sound of people running inside. In less than five minutes, he said, an ambulance was on the scene. The condition of the girl is unknown at this time.

About an hour later after the shooting, shaken neighbors were still sitting on a nearby stoop.

Spiers said he had met the young girl before and described her as a “sweetheart.”

“It’s appalling,” he said. “It’s happened too much.”