The 19-year-old man charged in the shooting death of a teen inside a Bronx apartment Thursday evening cried after his friend died, telling his family he thought the gun was empty, the man's grandmother told NBC 4 New York.
"He is suffering," Villittha Lewis said Friday, recounting how her grandson, Steafon Lewis, cried with her all night after he shot and killed 17-year-old Ackeem Davis. "That was his buddy. 'Mama, I hurt him, mama, mama.'"
Villittha said her grandson told her he was playing around with a gun he thought was empty when Davis was shot in the chest.
"He said, 'Mama, I'm sorry I failed you, mama, I don't know why I played with that damn gun.' That's what he said," she said.
Steafon Lewis was arrested Friday on charges of manslaughter and criminal possession of a firearm.
"An innocent child. He's 19 years old. He's not even 21, but you're going to charge him as an adult?" said Villittha Lewis.
Steafon Lewis' father offered an apology to Davis' family.
"They took a deep loss, but it was an accident," he said.
But Davis' family told NBC 4 New York they don't believe it was an accident.
"We don't think it was playing or no accident, because we've seen him for ourselves, so that's what I have to say about that," said Anjelic Davis, the teen's sister.
Davis' family has unanswered questions about just what happened in the apartment. The gun has not yet been found by police, and family members say that shows someone is hiding something.
"We want this to be a full investigation," said Ingrid Wright, Davis' aunt. "We don't want him to be just tossed to the side."
Davis was just a year away from graduating. He planned to serve his country in the army, his family said.
Neighbors said Thursday they saw Davis sitting outside his building just before he died, joking around with friends.
Rachel Williams said Davis was a "nice, well-known kid."
"Very good, not a troublemaker," she said. "He didn't deserve that."