Lord Help Us: Georgia Gang Leader Put Out a Hit on a 9-Month-Old

Empty Cot (Photo: Peter Dazeley/Getty Images)

Lord Help Us: Georgia Gang Leader Put Out a Hit on a 9-Month-Old

The baby's mother, grandmother and family friend were also targeted in the ruthless attack.

Published May 19, 2016

Need proof that there are truly heartless people in the world? Look no further than Autry State Prison in Georgia, where an incarcerated gang leader ordered a hit on a 9-month-old baby from his prison cell.

Kenneth Jackson, leader of the Georgia's Sex Money Murder Bloods gang, has been indicted for the ordered execution of the infant to get revenge on the innocent baby's uncle, who allegedly shot a member of Jackson's gang.

Jackson allegedly ordered the killing of KenDarius Edwards in May 2014 using a cellphone that was smuggled into his cell.

The order resulted in several masked gang members invading the home of KenDarius's motherTanyika Smith, cornering her, his grandmother and a family friend in a bathroom and opening fire. All three adults reportedly tried to shield the baby with their own bodies, and were each shot multiple times. Tanyika was struck with a harrowing eight bullets. All three victims survived, but, heartbreakingly, KenDarius died in his mother's arms.

DeKalb County Chief of Police Cedric Alexander said, "You're talking about a nine9-month-old helpless child and three women who tried to protect that child."

Jackson now faces several felony counts, including malice murder, felony murder, as well as a violation of Georgia's Street Gang and Terrorism Act. The alleged gunmen, Devin Thomas, Marco Watson and Christopher Florence, face similar charges. Two other individuals were also named in the case, according to 11 Alive.

DeKalb District Attorney Robert James said at a press conference, "We are at war with the organized street gangs." Adding, "This is a war we have to win. This is a war we intend to win."

Thomas pleaded guilty to the fatal shooting last November and was sentenced to life in prison. After he was given his sentence, Thomas read a message of apology to KenDarius's family. "I can’t bring anyone back and I know what I did was wrong. I felt like this was the best way to give my life for KenDarius. I just want to ask you guys to forgive me, and I’m sorry," he said, according to WSB-TV.

Smith, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, said that Thomas's remarks provided little comfort. "I thought saying sorry would relieve something but it didn’t because that’s not bringing my baby back," she said. "I’m happy he did say sorry and stepped up." Adding, "I really just want my baby."

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Written by Evelyn Diaz

(Photo: Peter Dazeley/Getty Images)


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