Family Says 16-Year-Old Murdered by Gang Members
(Memphis) The person responsible for murdering a Whitehaven teen is now behind bars.
Allen Hall, 18, turned himself in Saturday evening and was charged with 1st degree murder for the shooting death of Cleveion Coley.
Coley, 16, is the latest shooting victim, witnesses say, of the gang, Kingsgate Mafia. Friday night’s murder was especially tough on the victim’s older brother, James Wilks.
“[The] man didn’t even get to live his life,” he said. “He ain’t got no kids or nothing.”
Wilks says his brother had just walked downstairs and turned the corner outside their apartment. It’s not clear if Coley was the target but someone yelled out the word “mafia” and opened fire. Coley was hit in the chest. He ran upstairs where they called 911
“He fell in my arms and said, ‘I got shot, make sure it didn’t get in my heart’,” said Wilks. “So I tried to put pressure on him,” he added as he began to cry.
Wilks says his brother would have been a junior at Hillcrest High School and one day wanted to go culinary school to become a chef.
“That’s my baby,” said the victim’s mother, Jwanda Echols. “He’s gone and I’m just trying to get through it.”
Coley’s life was cut short and Echols fears others could become victims too as the gang continues to terrorize the neighborhood, shooting at people and often beating others up.
“They came through here not even two hours ago, constantly making threats, ‘It’s not over. We going to get this person and we going to get that person’,” she said. “We don’t even feel safe here.”
Police told the family they would continue their patrols to keep them safe.
“I want justice for my son, I really do,” said Echols. “He was doing something with his life. He wasn’t running around here with this mafia.”
The victim’s mother said her son’s last words were, ‘Tell them to hurry up.’ He was talking about paramedics. The family says it took them 26 minutes to arrive.
Hall is currently being held without bond.
UPDATE: The Memphis Fire Department shared their records with us. A spokesperson says paramedics were at the home in less than five minutes and an ambulance arrived in less than nine minutes.