KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Family and friends remember Cameron Lamb’s birthday a year and a half after he was shot and killed. His alleged killer, a Kansas City Police detective, is now facing charges in the Jackson County court.
His family uses Lamb’s birthday to help others and hopefully create change.
Free burgers, bouncy houses, poetry about civil rights and prayer are part of CD’s second annual Day of Service. CD was Lamb’s nickname.
His mom, Laurie Bey, said Lamb had a generous nature. They made t-shirts that read, “Cam’s Gifted Hands.” He worked as a mechanic before he was killed.
“If he would see someone stopped on the side of the road, he would go and assist at no charge,” Bey said, “or he did work very low.”
Lamb would have been 28 years old. But in December 2019 the father of three was shot and killed by a KCPD Det. Eric DeValkenaere.
“In place of reading him his rights, he’s read his final prayers,” Lamb’s Cousin read in poem. “This just ain’t fair, the way the system does us.”
Bey said Lamb’s birthday is now a reminder to fight for justice.
“I feel like it’s time for people to be held accountable for their actions,” Bey said.
Other families facing the same fight traveled from Georgia and Texas to show support. Last year, they all met at the White House.
These families formed a group that they don’t want any other parent to have to join.
“That child could’ve been your child,” one father said, “and we have to fight today so that it don’t be anybody else’s child.”
Civil rights attorney Lee Merritt said they worked with the U.S. Senate and the Trump administration, and a file has been opened by the U.S. Department of Justice, but movement has stalled on the federal level.
“Will we see change? I think we will, but it’s going to take a fight,” Merritt said.
In Jackson County, charges have been filed against the detective who prosecutors say shot and killed lamb. DeValkenaere has plead not guilty.
“As long as the community is uninvolved, then people can get away with things,” Merritt said. “but if we remain vigilant, I think we start to see these things change.”
This community sends up a birthday wish, along with balloons, hoping justice will bring about change.