Grandmother says she blames herself in road rage shooting death of 3-year-old Acen King

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KARK) — The grandmother of three-year-old Acen King, the toddler shot and killed during an apparent road rage incident last December, is speaking out for the first time.

“He was a unique child so God called a major angel home,” King’s grandmother, Kim King-Macon said.

Acen King
Acen King was shot on December 17 while riding in his grandmother’s car. (KARK)

King was shot on December 17 while riding in King-Macon’s car in Little Rock, Arkansas. At first, she did not realize he’d been shot.

“I looked back at the kids and I asked, ‘Are you okay?’ and Acen shook his head yes,” King-Macon recalled.

But her relief turned to heartbreak just 15 minutes later.

“The sight I saw wasn’t what I wanted to see and that sight has never left my eyes. He had blood running down his face and it just plays over and over in my head ‘cause his body was slumped over in the car and I couldn’t grab him. All I could do is scream and holler ‘No, no, God… you can’t be doing this to me,'” she recalled.

King-Macon said there was no life left in his eyes.

“I [can] remember calling my son back and telling him that it was not a gunshot in the air that Acen had been shot and he said ‘Momma please don’t tell me my baby is dead.’ Well, I couldn’t tell him that because his baby was,” she continued.

The grandmother of seven has struggled with King’s death knowing it happened in her car.

“Not to know your grandchild had been shot and you drive that far with him. I think I beat myself up because I feel like had I known, I could’ve got him to the hospital and maybe save him,” she said.

Gary Holmes
Gary Eugene Holmes (Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

The suspect in the case, Gary Holmes, turned himself into law enforcement hours before King’s funeral.

King-Macon said he apologized to her during a court appearance last week.

Despite the apology, King-Macon knows the fight for justice is just getting started.

“Acen is gone but this is not over,” she said.

Holmes is charged with first-degree murder. He will be in court again on Thursday.