Baltimore Police Department
Rachaell Davis
Dec, 22, 2017

A Washington, DC mother has been suddenly left to grieve the senseless death of her teen son and she believes his life was cut short over a pair of sneakers.

According to The Washington Post, Benita Smith said there was nothing her son James Anthony wanted more for Christmas than a pair of red Nike Air Jordans, which she surprised him with just a few days early. The 17-year-old high school sophomore was sadly only able to enjoy the shoes for four days before he was fatally shot on the basketball court at the Fredrick Douglas Community Center on Monday, December 18.

He was later found one block away on a nearby street and died two hours later after being rushed to the hospital. His mother believes her son was targeted for his shoes, which carried a $220 price tag.

"He was an all-American kid,” Smith said. “He loved his red shoes. He loved basketball. He loved his computer games. I can’t believe he was killed, all over a pair of shoes.”

James Anthony Smith was the 110th homicide victim for the District this year, and the 44th in his neighborhood. Police are currently investigating the shooting as a robbery, however, no arrests have been made in connection to the killing as a of Tuesday.