A Wilmington teenager has spent the past month fighting for his life in the hospital after he was robbed and badly beaten.
16-year-old Jahreese Jones' life has been changed forever.
"It's been Hell. Countless sleepless nights," said Jones' mother, Joye Todd.
Three weeks ago, Todd got the phone call all parents fear. Her son had missed curfew and then law enforcement contacted her.
"I don't remember exactly what time it was, but next thing I knew the police was knockin' at my door, saying my son was hurt and at (the) hospital," Todd said.
Todd said her son had stumbled into a gas station near the Crestwood Estates development. He was half conscious and visibly beaten. Todd said her son's wallet, headphones, and phone were all taken. Immediately he was rushed to the hospital.
"He had two bleeds on the brain and his brain was swelling," Todd explained.
She said the day after the incident her son's condition only got worse.
"Part of his skull was removed. Part of his front lobe of his brain was removed," Todd explained through teary eyes.
What doctors didn't remove was the teenager's will to live. Jones survived multiple brain surgeries.
"We want justice for this. For him. Because he didn't deserve that," Todd said.
His family said Jones has never been one to stir up trouble. They hope his condition continues to improve.
"He's the kid that help you take out the trash, that watch the kids, he's always been very helpful," said his aunt Juneshia McKnight.
Todd said the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office had informed her that a few leads had been identified, but no arrests had been made.
No matter the suspects, Jones's family members want justice, but not revenge.
"We want to send them to jail not to Hell, so we just telling people to lay low and let the police handle it," said Judy McKnight, another family member.
As the investigation continues, Jones' family will continue helping their son down the road to recovery.
"We won't know the type of person he will be until the brain swelling goes down," Jones said.
Todd said her son is currently in the acute rehabilitation clinic at New Hanover Regional Medical Center.
She is asking that anyone with information related to the assault please contact the Wilmington Police Department or New Hanover County Sheriff's Office.
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