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Age 9 Boy Bravely Helps Police Track Down His Mother's Killer

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There are few things more brutal than having someone snatched away from you on a whim while you stand by helplessly.

It’s a possibility we might never face, but for others, it’s a terrible reality. It’s difficult enough for adults to deal with this sort of loss, but when this horrible scenario involves children, it’s even more tragic.

According to an advisory from the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia, that’s exactly what one boy named Justin witnessed — but he didn’t let his tragedy get impede justice.

“Last night Lake City Police responded to Rainwood Apartments on Harper Drive to a call where a woman was shot multiple times in front of her 9 year old son by her boyfriend,” the statement read.

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“The 9 year old told Police that the man identified as Darius Deandre Evans after an argument shot his mother multiple times, walked out of the apartment, and then came back in and began shooting her again.”

“The victim was pronounced dead upon arrival to Southern Regional Hospital.”

The boy not only saw his mother, Iyonna Hodo, shot, he saw — or at least knew — that his mother had been shot multiple times. Despite the pain he must have been experiencing, he told police he wanted Evans arrested and charged, and did his best to ensure that end.

“The 9 year old made it clear that he wanted the man who killed his mother caught and was even brave enough to ride with the Sheriff to show him where he thought Evans may have fled,” the statement continued.

After a 6-hour manhunt, Evans was finally caught. He’ll likely be facing maximum penalties and has been taken to jail.

“Wow, just buried my brother, now my niece, when it rains its pour,” Hodo’s aunt Yolanda Stokes wrote on Facebook. “Rest in Peace Iyonna ( Yummie ) Hodo, FB please keep her son Justin in your prayers.”

“Why are People so quick to take another person life. Yummie your with your dad now… Rest Now…. Love you….. Aunte?????❤️❤️❤️❤️”

A GoFundMe has been set up for Hodo and her son, and “any donation received will go to funeral costs and to secure assistance for her son,” according to the page.

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“Her biggest goal was to raise her son into becoming a man and for a heartless senseless person of 3 years to get that close to her and kill her is completely unacceptable,” the page continued. “This kid is the bravest kid I know to call police for his mom.”

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking