KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- “I`m a grown man, and it still affects me on a daily basis,” said Charles Bolton Sr., who lost his son earlier this year.
Bolton lost his son, 39-year-old Charles Anthony Bolton Jr., in January to gun violence, and is discussing the effects losing a parent has on their children. Kansas City got off to a bad start in 2016 with eight homicides in the first 10 days of the year.
And now in early December, the city is up to 114-killings and the metro area has recorded 185 homicides. The latest homicide happened over the weekend in south Kansas City.
Officers responded to 104th and Blue Ridge Boulevard about 7:30 Saturday night. They found two people shot inside a car, one person was dead, the other person was taken to the hospital.
Those homicides have left families without loved ones, and children without parents this Christmas, but the pain may not end there.
“Still don`t know why, still don`t know who did it,” said Bolton Sr., “My only son.”
Someone shot him early in the morning at Capital Center Inn just off Interstate 435 and 87th Street.
“It was a real shock when somebody wakes you up out of your sleep to tell you that your sons been murdered,” Bolton Sr. said.
The 39-year-old is one of dozens murdered this year, but for Bolton Sr. and his family, the pain and questions remain.
“I don`t understand it, I mean, when we were young, you may get into a fight or two, but to have this type of murder rate, and knowing that these are just senseless murders, especially when there are little kids involved, all the way to adults, it just doesn`t make sense to me at all, it`s very disturbing,” Bolton Sr. added.
Even more disturbing, Bolton Sr. says people who know him have tried to use his son's name to make money and reap the benefits of other donations.
“You know, throw somebody's name out there and say that you're taking donations, or you are the spokesperson for them, and you haven't asked that person's family can you do so,” Bolton Sr. said.
Bolton Jr. leaves behind children - ranging from little kids to teenagers. Bolton Sr. says that's why he and his family attended the Healing Pathway Victim Service Agency and KCPD Christmas party this weekend.
Bolton Sr. says the annual event makes sure the children of homicide victims get the necessities that they need.
“Underwear, socks, maybe warmer shirts and stuff like that,” said Bolton Sr.
Bolton Sr. says this is a wonderful program for helping out these kids.
“They were just so happy that somebody was thinking about them,” he added.
If you're going to donate to a person or organization, make sure you do your homework and know that your money is actually helping the people you want to help.