MACON, Ga. — Jasmine Williams says she and her family were shocked to hear that her cousin, Jamerian Lawrence, was shot last Sunday. She says she didn't know how serious it was at the time.
"Everybody was really hurt because he was so young, so it was kind of a shock like, 'OK, we're just really hoping he made it,'" Williams says.
On Thursday, Bibb County Coroner Leon Jones pronounced Lawrence dead. He was 15 years old.
"Seeing everybody cry, break down, it's kind of sad because we're hurting. We're going through something major, like he didn't get to live his life, really. He still was young," says Williams.
Williams says growing up here in Macon, family came first, especially for Lawrence.
"Every Sunday, we'd have a family gathering every Sunday, so everybody was close," she says.
She says her cousin was a student at Northeast High School and one thing she's seen is support, both in person, and on social media.
"He's very loved, like, very loved. I see it a lot, not just on Facebook, everywhere you go. You know, it's always something positive or, 'Oh, I knew him, I went to school with him.' I can tell he was very loved," she says.
Williams says with Christmas only days away, this holiday season won't be the same.
"I can pretty much say it's not easy because Christmas is right around the corner. It's sad. Everybody's hurting. I wish the situation could be prevented," says Williams.
The Bibb County Sheriff's Office says the day after the shooting, 18-year-old Semaj Martin turned himself in. He has since been charged with murder.