AUGUSTA, Ga. - A 12-year-old Georgia boy died Monday when he touched a fence at an athletic complex that had been electrified by a live wire, The Augusta Chronicle reported.
Melquan Kwame Robinson, of Augusta, was at football practice when he climbed over a chain-link fence, Richmond County Coroner Mark Bowen told the newspaper.
The boy was retrieving a football when he was electrocuted, our ABC affiliate WJBF reported. A live wire touching the fence caused several feet of fencing on either side of a light pole to have a live current of electricity running through it when Robinson touched it.
The boy was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 9:56 p.m. Monday, the Chronicle reported.
Family friend Don Clark says Robinson's parents have a lot of unanswered questions.
"They're definitely upset over the fact that, how could this happen? You could play the what-ifs in so many different scenarios and it would never get any better," Clark said. "This young man was where he needed to be. He was doing what he loved. He was doing what was tied to his passion, which was playing football. He was very energetic, very athletic young man, but he had a good heart. He loved his family and his family of course is dealing with the loss."
Two other children were injured when they tried to pull Robinson down from the fence, WJBF reported. David Sette and Traqwon Berry were taken to the hospital for treatment.
"There really aren't even enough words for me to tell him how brave he is," Sette's mother, Brandi, said. "In his mind, he didn't think he could do enough. He says, 'Please tell him I'm sorry.' I'm like, 'You don't understand. You didn't know, he didn't know what he was getting himself into.' He was like, 'I knew he was hurting and I tried to help him and then when I tried to help him, I got hurt,' but he said it was worth it."
The athletic complex is owned by the city of Augusta. In a statement, city officials said three other people were injured. Two were juveniles and one was an adult, according to the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of all involved in this accident,” Augusta Mayor Hardie Davis said in a statement. “We ask Augustans to stand together to extend our condolences and embrace the family of Melquan Kwame Robinson with love during this sudden and unexpected loss.”
City Commissioner Marion Williams told WDRW that questions about the incident need to be addressed.
“A lot of parts that have to be answered on this, but before we make any rash decisions I want to be sure that we hear everything,” Williams told the television station Tuesday. “I want to make sure we look at every possible means over this happening and find out who's at fault.”
12-year-old Melquan Robinson's family is hosting a vigil to honor their loved one on Thursday night at the Bernie Ward Community Center. pic.twitter.com/w5NloOYAWH— News 12 NBC 26 (@WRDW_WAGT) October 16, 2018
Workers are roping off the area where a 12 y/o was electrocuted and killed. The coroner says the fence was electrified by a live wire touching the fence. We asked the city workers to tell us what’s going on + they told us they were instructed not to talk to the media. @WRDW_WAGT pic.twitter.com/zokgzdP2O1— Kelly Wiley (@KellyWRDW) October 16, 2018
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