Detroit mother, boyfriend sentenced in death of 3-year-old boy playing with gun

Kinesha Boyd and Demetrius Peals at their sentencing hearing in Detroit on May 9, 2018. (WDIV)

DETROIT – A Detroit mother and her boyfriend were in court Wednesday to be sentenced in the death of a 3-year-old boy who shot himself while playing with a gun on the Detroit's east side.

Kinesha Boyd, 20, the boy's mother, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and lying to a peace officer.

Demetrius Lorenzo Peals, 22, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, second-degree child abuse and felony firearms violations. A charge of tampering with evidence was dismissed. 

Police said the boy, Kyrei Boyd, was fatally shot Dec. 6, 2017, at a home in the 11700 block of Rossiter Street. He was shot at about 7 p.m. and rushed to St. John Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

ORIGINAL REPORT: 3-year-old boy fatally shot on Detroit's east side

Police said Kyrei was playing with Peals' gun when it went off, fatally wounding him.

Peals was sentenced to 4 to 15 years in prison.

Boyd was sentenced to 2 years in prison under the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act so she will leave prison with a clean record.

Police: Boyfriend ran out with child in arms

Assistant Detroit police Chief Arnold Williams said the child was shot in the face. Williams said emergency medical officials were at the scene of a body that was found in the 11000 block of Morang Avenue when Peals ran out of an apartment building across the street with a child in his arms.

Demetrius Lorenzo Peals

Police said Peals gave Kyrei to the officials, who realized the child had a gunshot wound on his face. Officials took the boy to St. John Hospital in critical condition, but the child died from his injuries.

Peals was not seen after he passed Kyrei off to medical officials, but he turned himself into police the next morning. 

"It's senseless," Williams said. "There's no reason for any child to lose their lives. This should never happen. It should never happen. It's inexcusable."

Police originally were called to the scene to investigate a body that had been found across the street from the shooting. It's unclear if that person's death was suspicious or natural, but Williams said the child was able to get to the hospital quickly only because medical officials were already right across the street.

Police: Mother said shots fired during neighbors' conflict

Williams said Boyd told police there was a conflict between neighbors and the gunshot was fired from outside the apartment building, but officers didn't find evidence of shots fired from outside.

Williams said police believe the shot was fired inside the home. Boyd was in the home with Peals, the 3-year-old and a 1-year-old child. Police believe Boyd and the 1-year-old child were in another room when Peals ran outside with the victim.

No weapon was found inside the home. 


About the Authors:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.

Nick joined the Local 4 team in February of 2015. Prior to that he spent 6 years in Sacramento covering a long list of big stories including wildfires and earthquakes. Raised in Sterling Heights, he is no stranger to the deep history and pride Detroit has to offer.