A Mother, Shaniqua Stephens of Forest Park, Georgia, had just watched her 13-year-old son take out the trash when she heard a noise.
“I heard a big boom. I couldn’t tell if it was a gun shot or what.” she said “I just knew that it was something that was wrong,”
She and her daughter ran upstairs and found the boy.
“We kicked in the door. We found him just laying there in a pool of blood,” Stephens said.
“My daughter screamed and said, ‘Mom turn his phone off!’ As I proceeded to look at his phone he was on Instagram Live.”
Malachi Hemphill’s mobile phone was still on, streaming live video through Instagram. Malachi was live on the social media site, handling the gun when it went off.
A number of his friends were watching when the shooting happened. Stephens said they rushed to her house afterward.
“There was about 40 to 50 kids outside,” said Stephens. “I guess these were the kids that were watching on live that live in the area. I guess when it happened they just ran over here.”
She said one of the friends watching the live video had asked him to put an ammunition clip in the gun. “As he put the clip in the gun, that is when the gun went off,” Stephens said.
Forest Park police are now investigating how Malachi got possession of the handgun. Stephens was told that Malachi received the gun by a friend but the question remains who gave the gun to that friend. The boy was rushed to Grady Hospital where he died.
“This is just a pain that will never go away,” Stephens said. “He was my only son. He was just only 13. Just the thought of me seeing him on the floor will never leave my brain.”
The mother said that she and her husband Ernest did their best to keep track of Malachi’s activities on social media, and tried their best to be aware of what their kids were doing, despite him creating numerous profiles.
“(The) Detective asked me yesterday, ‘What was Malachi’s Instagram name?’ I couldn’t tell him what Malachi’s Instagram name was because he would make up so many different pages,” Stephens said.
Stephens added that she hopes parents get the message to keep a close eye on what their kids are doing and who they are doing it with. “Monitor their phones, just monitor your children. More now than anything.”
Malichi’s step-father, Ernest Stephens, also added: “It can happen to the best parents…it can happen to the best people. The best ones that loved their kids, you know?”
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