State seeking death penalty for man accused of killing 5-year-old Wilson boy

State seeking death penalty for man accused of killing 5-year-old Wilson boy
Published: Jan. 25, 2022 at 4:03 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 25, 2022 at 5:38 PM EST
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WILSON, N.C. (WITN) - The state is seeking the death penalty against a man accused of killing a 5-year-old Wilson boy in August of 2020.

WRAL reports Darius Sessoms, 25, pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in court on Tuesday.

Sessoms was indicted by a grand jury for charges of first-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a felon on Dec. 22nd, 2021.

Family members of 5-year-old Cannon Hinnant said the boy was riding his bike outside his dad’s home on Archers Road in Wilson when he was shot in the head. Hinnant’s mother said his two sisters, ages 8 and 7, saw their brother get shot.

“I pray he gets the death penalty,” said Bonny Parker, Cannon Hinnant’s mom.

Cannon Hinnant’s dad, Austin Hinnant, said there was no “bad blood” between him and his neighbor. A neighbor said that the two men had dinner together the night before the shooting and that Sessoms was at his neighbor’s home earlier that day, but it is still unclear why Sessoms shot the boy.

Sessoms stood before Cannon Hinnant’s family for the first time since prosecutors said he shot and killed Cannon Hinnant. Parker says it was an emotional but necessary day.

“It’ll never bring my child back. But I want him to admit and stand up to what he done to my child. It was hard walking in there and having to face someone who took my baby,” Parker said.

Parker wore a t-shirt with her son’s face on it during the court appearance. Sessoms appeared to show no emotion as the state announced they were seeking the death penalty for him.

“That was the purpose of him being able to see Cannon’s face again. I’m hoping that him seeing Cannon’s face again, he lays down tonight and doesn’t sleep,” Parker said.

Sessoms was appointed a second attorney for his capital case and has his next court appearance on April 10th.

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