Mom of murdered 5-year-old Cannon Hinnant vows to ‘burn country down’ for justice
The mother of Cannon Hinnant, the 5-year-old boy who was shot and murdered in his yard while playing, said on Facebook yesterday she will “burn the country down” in order to bring to justice the man who allegedly killed her son.
“That man will see me and my son through my face! This sorry excuse as a human being will rot in hell,” said Hinnant’s mother, Bonny Waddell.
“I will burn this country down if it’s what it’ll take to see [the alleged shooter] burn in hell,” she wrote. “I’m ready to flip this country upside down,” she added.
Police say that Darius Sessoms, 25, shot Cannon in the head at point-blank range, in a deliberate murder. Sessoms lives nearby and knows the family. He reportedly had dinner with the boy’s father the night before.
Neighbors say that they witnessed Sessoms as he “ran up to the boy, put the gun near his head and fired before running back to his own house,” says WRAL.
“My first reaction was he’s playing with the kids,” said Doris Lybrand, who lives across the street. “For a second, I thought, ‘That couldn’t happen.’ People don’t run across the street and kill kids.”
Police have not yet revealed a motive for the killing. But Waddell indicated it may have had to do with a racial grievance.
“My baby didn’t see color,” said Waddell in a Facebook post. “[M]y baby made sure you knew he loved you even if he only knew you 5 minutes idc [sic] what damn color you were!”
Still, people who knew both Sessoms and Waddell are stunned.
“We used to play together and I never thought he’d kill someone,” said Rachel Pipkin, a cousin of Cannon’s mother about Sessoms, according to local WIRC TV. “A mother now has to lay her son to rest at 5 years old which she should never have to do. He’ll never be forgotten.”
Police arrested Sessoms with the assistance of the U.S. Marshals Service Carolinas Regional Task Force after he fled the scene as he hid in a home in a nearby city, says WSOCTV.
Sessoms appeared via video in his first court appearance yesterday where he was advised of the first-degree murder charges against him. Advised of his right to counsel, Sessoms said he will try to hire a lawyer rather than use a court-appointed attorney. He is being held without bond and will appear in a probable cause hearing on August 25.
North Carolina can impose the death penalty in cases of murders that are “especially heinous, atrocious, or cruel,” but so far, prosecutors have not said if they will ask for capital punishment in the case.
Cannon’s funeral will be held today and a candlelight vigil will take place on the steps of the county courthouse in Wilson County North Carolina.
“One thing was for sure,” Waddell said in a Facebook photo of the two shortly after Cannon was killed, “he loves his mommy and he knew just how much mommy loved him.”
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