KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A young Kansas City father is dead leaving behind two young children who will never know their father.
“Extreme hurt. Disappointment. A soul-drenching hurt,” Davena Rivera said of how she felt when she found out her 20-year-old son Devon Rivera-Wright, the oldest of eight children, was shot and killed.
“He's my baby,” Rivera added.
Around 1:40 p.m. on Jan. 3, Riverside Police responded to NW Karen Boulevard on a shooting.
Rivera-Wright's mom said all she knows is he was with his friends.
“They picked him up and took him to Riverside,” Rivera explained.
Officers later found Rivera-Wright on the ground, shot dead.
He had two young children. Kelsi Hicks, the mother of his son, said it was heartbreaking getting the news.
“No, this can't true... My son's father, we've had problems, but Devon has always loved his kids,” Hicks said.
Initial reports indicated that a suspect may have run into the woods, so a perimeter was set and Riverside and Kansas City, Mo. K-9 teams were dispatched.
Further investigation revealed that the person who ran from the scene was possibly a witness.
“Devon does not deserve what happened to him. His babies don't deserve what happened to him, his family,” Hicks added. “It's just, it's sad. My heart was broken for our children. How could somebody take somebody away from two beautiful babies? It's just not fair.”
His family and friends said they will always remind his children of his great qualities.
“Devon is so funny, and he loved basketball, you could ask anybody. Devon was so good at basketball,” Hicks recalled.
“He was a good kid. He did a few things, maybe hanging around with not a good crowd. He was very smart, positive, loving, cared about his babies,” Rivera said.
Hicks said his two-year-old babies will now have to grow up without a father, and hopes someone will come forward with information.
“Get justice for them, just so they know. This person doesn't deserve to be out there,” Hicks said.
Police are still interviewing witnesses and persons of interest.
Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the TIPS hotline at (816) 474-TIPS.