A young boy died on Monday while playing football near an Augusta Community Center after touching a fence that had been electrified by a live wire.
Melquan Kwame Robinson, 12, was at football practice at Fleming Park when he and a friend were throwing the football to one another. The ball was thrown over the fence when the victim went to retrieve it. As he grabbed the fence, a live wire was reportedly touching it and caused Robinson to be electrocuted to death, WJBF reported.
Crews said the victim’s friends David Sette and Traqwon Berry were injured when they tried to pull Robinson down from the fence. A deputy who arrived at the scene tried to revive Robinson with chest compression before medics arrived, but no pulse was found.
The 12-year-old was taken to the Children’s Hospital of Augusta at 9:56 p.m. when he was pronounced dead.
Robinson’s former football coach and friend of the family told the August Chronicle that the parents are having a hard time dealing with their son’s death.
“They’re definitely upset over the fact of how could this happen, with the fact that there were so many children,” said Clark. “You can play the what ifs in many different scenarios and it will never get any better. The fact that this situation happened with so many kids out here, it’s heartbreaking.”
Robinson’s body has been taken to the GBI Lab for an autopsy.
Brandi Sette said her son David Sette is extremely upset over his friend’s death.
“There really aren’t even enough words for me to tell him how brave he is,” said Brandi. “In his mind, he didn’t think he could do enough. He says, ‘Please tell him I’m sorry.’ I’m like, ‘You don’t understand. You didn’t know, he didn’t know what he was getting himself into.’ He was like, ‘I knew he was hurting and I tried to help him and then when I tried to help him, I got hurt,’ but he said it was worth it.”
Hardie Davis, the mayor of Augusta released the following statement:
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of all involved in this accident. … We ask Augustans to stand together to extend our condolences and embrace the family of Melquan Kwame Robinson with love during this sudden and unexpected loss.”
Marion Williams, the City Commissioner said they’re looking into “every possible means over this happening and [to] find out who’s at fault.”
Clark said that Robinson will be remembered most for infectious smile and personality.
“We lost a future leader,” Clark noted. “We lost a future athlete. We lost a child in our city.”
The local utility company, Georgia Power is working with officials while conducting an investigation. The utility company noted in a statement, “Georgia Power’s condolences and sympathies are with the individuals and their families following last night’s tragic event at Fleming Athletic Complex. … Our preliminary investigation indicates that Georgia Power does not control or maintain the voltage that energized the fence at the complex. We will continue to work with local officials on their investigation.”
A vigil for Robinson will be held on Thursday night 6 p.m. at the place he perished.