‘They took my baby from me:’ Mother of murdered 12-year-old says child safety concerns were ignored
It happened near 46th and Hampton on Sunday, Aug. 29. Police say the child died of blunt force trauma.
Family says that boy was 12-year-old Andre Smith Jr. His mom, Nakeda Martina, is devastated and says she has been fighting to regain custody of Andre because she was worried about his safety.
“He was so sweet, he was personable, he just always smiling, wanting to hug people,” Martina said about Andre.
Martina says Andre wanted to own a business some day, but the 12-year-old's life was cut short Sunday.
Family says he was beaten to death with a hammer. Andre's 8-year-old brother was also injured. Police say they're looking for a known suspect.
“He just call me Friday night, wished me a happy birthday,” Martina said through tears.
Martina says Andre's grandmother had custody of Andre and his siblings, but she has been fighting to get her kids back.
“I’ve been calling [child protective services] every week since Andre got hit by a car July 4,” Martina said. “Nobody contacted me back.”
CBS 58 is not naming the suspect because he's not charged. Martina showed CBS 58 text messages from earlier this month where she asked Andre's guardian not to allow that suspect around the kids.
“I hope every second, every breath you take, you think about how you killed my baby,” Martina said. “He probably was crying for his mama, you all know he wanted to come home.”
Now Martina wants answers from the state about how this could've happened, and she wants to be able to see her other kids.
“They all are responsible for ignoring me and my child,” Martina said. “I’ve been calling them, nobody came, nobody checked on my child.”
And most of all she wants justice for Andre.
“They took my baby from me,” Martina said. “He was so sweet, I miss him.”
Martina says she has a lawyer trying to get her other kids back.
The Department of Children and Families did not return a request for comment.