A 13-year-old boy accidentally shot himself as his friends watched via Instagram Live, WXIA reports.
Malachi Hemphill was live on the popular social media site handling a gun when it went off. He was rushed to a local hospital where he later died.
“I heard a big boom. I couldn’t tell if it was a gun shot or what,” Hemphill’s mom, Shaniqua Stephens said. “I just knew that it was something that was wrong.”
Stephens, who had just watched her son take out the trash Monday evening, said she and her daughter ran upstairs and found Malachi.
“We kicked in the door. We found him just laying there in a pool of blood,” Stephens recalled. “My daughter screamed and said, ‘Mom turn his phone off!’ As I proceeded to look at his phone he was on Instagram Live.”
Several of Malachi’s friends were watching at the time of the incident. Stephens said they rushed to her house soon after.
“There was about 40 to 50 kids outside,” she said. “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.”
Stephens said someone asked her son why he did not have a clip in the gun he was showing and told him to add one.
“As he put the clip in the gun, that is when the gun went off.”
When asked how Malachi got hold of the weapon, Stephens told reporters that she wasn’t all the way certain. She said someone told her he got the gun from a friend who obtained it from someone else. Detectives are working to find out where the gun came from.
Although Stephens and her husband monitored Malachi’s social media profiles regularly, she said it was difficult to keep track of his online activities. Both parents said they did their best to know their children’s friends and where they were at all times.
“Monitor their phones, just monitor your children. More now than anything,” Stephens said.