COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Imagine being only 17 years old and having your brother murdered, then being arrested and charged with two counts of aggravated assault for running after his killer.
That’s the unfortunate reality for one Columbus teen who’s now celebrating what would have been his brother’s 14th birthday. This comes just days after bonding out of jail.
“I want to say thank you for the donations," because if it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be right here,” said Jahiem Davis.
Davis is home with his family, celebrating what should have been his brother Jamareion Davis’ 14th birthday. But Jamareion was shot and killed on 32nd Avenue one month ago.
“It’s kind of indescribable," said Jahiem and Jamareion’s father, Jonathan Harris. "You look at the news, you see a lot of things on social media, it’s visible with a lot of crime going around. But it’s totally different when it hits home, especially when it’s your 13-year-old child that was murdered at his own home.”
But that wasn’t the only tragedy to strike this family. Police report moments after Jamareion’s death, his older brother Jahiem chased the suspected killer to a family member’s home and made threats. Now, he’s facing two aggravated assault charges. This time last week, he was in jail with a $50,000 bond.
But with the help of a GoFundMe account, community members raised the $5,000 to bond Jahiem out of jail in just a few days, making sure the teen could spend his brother’s birthday with family.
“People came through that I didn’t even know, so I just want to thank everyone for it," Jahiem said.
“For me it gave me a little life, gave me a little strength back, knowing my son is home,” Harris added.
“I have never seen the community as united in a cause, concerning a legal case like this as I have with this case,” said defense attorney Chris Breault.
Although Tuesday brings sadness without Jamareion’s presence on his own birthday, Jahiem said he won’t be sad. The family is spending the day together, lighting candles, and having Jamareion’s favorite dessert -- brownies.
“I’m feeling happy because it’s my brother’s birthday," Jahiem said. "I know he wouldn’t be sad so I’m not going to be sad.”
“It’s bitter that he’s not here," said the boys’ mother, Apollonia Davis.
But being together doesn’t make the day easy.
“It impacts me real bad because it feels like as much as I try to teach and talk to my kids about the importance of staying off the streets and to be home, and for him to be murdered in his own home it kind of leaves me like, where do I go from here?” Harris said.
18-year-old Jaquayvius Jones is in the Muscogee County Jail facing a murder charge for Jamareion’s death.
The next step for Jahiem is to face a superior court judge.