‘We need to stop letting it go:’ Mother of teen shot, killed in Durham demands a stop be put to gun violence

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Kenita Stubbs remembers her son, Michael Harris, as a ‘good kid’ who was always looking out for everyone else.

“He was loving, nurturing, selfless, curious, and overall he’s just the type to make sure that everybody is OK,” Stubbs said.

Stubbs said Harris was a rising sophomore who attended school in Cary. She said he planned to attend Duke University, had dreams of joining the Army, and he loved to cook as well.

“He would watch the Cooking Channel and pretty much mimic anything on there,” Stubbs said.

But Harris’ life was cut short on August 23, when he was hanging out with another family member at Seven Oaks Townhomes in Durham.

Stubbs said she had just spoken with Harris around 2:18 a.m.

A short time later, she got a call that her son had been shot just before 3 am outside of the apartments. He was taken to the hospital where he later died.

“My first thought was, did I just wake up to a bad dream?” Stubbs said. “How was I just texting him, and how did this happen?”

Stubbs told CBS 17 she thinks her son was an unintended target of a gang-related shooting.

“He was with a family member at the wrong place at the wrong time,” Stubbs said. “For him to die for something he stood against, it’s painful.”

Stubbs is calling on city leaders in Durham to do more to prevent gun violence and to curb gang activity. She is also asking the community to take action as well.

“I think we need to stop letting it go,” Stubbs said. “Until it’s your child, it’s not that much of an interest. It’s sad, but no one goes the extra mile. If you want something to change, you have to stand up.”

Stubbs is also asking that justice be served for her son, as the person responsible is still out there. She is asking that if anyone out there knows anything, that they come forward.

“The spirit that he has, he would want us to still stay strong,” Stubbs said. “He would want us to still fight. He would want us to bring justice and he would want us to do the right thing.”

Durham Police said Harris’ murder is still under investigation.

The number of shootings in Durham is on the rise as there have been 158 shooting incidents and a total of 189 people shot so far this year.

Authorities have increased patrols in areas hit hardest with gun violence.

Anyone with any information about the recent shootings are asked to call CrimeStoppers at 919-683-1200.

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