A 9-year-old boy and 8-year-old boy were killed by gunmen who shot up their house as they were asleep.
The shooting occurred on August 13. Kansas City police said 9-year-old Jayden Ugwuh and his cousin, Montell Ross, 8, were sleeping in their home when they were awoken by a barrage of bullets, WDAF reported.
There were six children inside the home at the time, according to authorities, who also believe the suspects were inside the home at some point.
Jayden’s father, Jayson Ugwuh, told the news station that Jayden ran from his bedroom when the shots were fired at around 1:30 a.m. When he noticed Montell wasn’t behind him, he ran back to get him and that's when they were both shot.
"I do not get it. I swear,” Ugwuh told WDAF. “We have to protect the future. He's the future.”
When Jayden was shot he walked up to his 12-year-old brother, Jayson Jr., and snuggled up next to him.
"Didn't even cry, just got hit and ran and laid up under his big brother, you know,” Ugwuh said. “Like he knew exactly where to go for comfort, you know what I'm saying.”
Jayson Jr. said when he looked down at his little brother, his eyes were open, but he could tell he was no longer alive.
"I got to deal with that and still raise them but what can I say to him, cause he actually held him, he held his cold body, you know what I am saying?” Ugwuh said. “How do I teach my son to cope with that when I can barely cope with it?
"He was in his safe spot, his home. This came to his home. So where else are you safe at if you are not safe where you sleep and wake up and eat. What can you do?"
Ugwuh said he would take Jayden to his job at a barber shop and pay him to sweep up. He would encourage his son to save his money.
“He pulled out $175 that he saved,” Ugwuh recalled. “I cried then... because he's listening to me.”
"He's not even gone to me. It's still not real, it's fresh.,” Ugwuh added. “I can't talk about him as if he's gone. I don't think I'll ever be able to do that.”
A 16-year-old girl was also struck during the shooting, but did not suffer life-threatening injuries, the Bradenton Herald reported. The shooters fired at least 20 shots into the home.
“Tell them please to turn themselves in, because they have destroyed us,” Ira Ross, Montell’s grandmother, told the Bradenton Herald.