MEMPHIS, Tenn. — An Orange Mound family is desperate for answers after they said their 12-year old was shot and killed by a stray bullet while he played video games inside the family’s home on Haynes Street on Christmas day.
“I’m going to miss that smile, that dancing (and) real good character,” said Joyce Newsom, the child’s grandmother.
Newsom said her grandson was Artemis Rayford. The family said “Sean,” as the family affectionally referred to Artemis, was a 7th grader at Sherwood Middle School and played football and basketball for the Orange Mound Raiders.
“I don’t see how in the world he could have gotten shot in the chest. I don’t understand that,” said Newsom.
Officers with the Memphis Police Department are not giving many details as to what happened.
“Somebody got into it at the store and the man came back. He ran across people’s yards trying to get away from the gunmen and the bullet shot her (Atemis’ mother) house and the house next door,” said Newsom.
Newsom said her grandson loved to dance. She said his favorite color was red.
“He was always the party of the city,” she adds.
The family has a message for the person responsible.
‘Turn yourself in because I know your mind has got to be on it. This was only a 12-year old child (who) hadn’t done a thing to you, minding his own business in his own house playing his game that his mother had gotten him for Christmas,” she adds.
Newsome said she believes her grandson stopped playing his video game and went to the door prior to being hit by the fatal bullet.
“That’s what I’m thinking because I don’t know, from where he was sitting how the bullet could have hit him in the chest,” she said.
The family said they do not have insurance and are struggling to come up with money for a funeral.
To help the family organize Sean’s funeral and burial, you can donate here.
©2021 Cox Media Group