A troubled Georgia teen who activists rallied behind for a heart transplant less than two years ago reportedly died in a car accident Tuesday while fleeing police.
Police say Anthony Stokes, 17, first carjacked a Honda from Perimeter Mall in Atlanta, then shot at an elderly woman inside her home during an attempted burglary in Roswell Tuesday afternoon. Police say Stokes then hit a 33-year-old pedestrian with the stolen vehicle before losing control and plowing into a pole, the New York Daily News reported.
The teen made national headlines in August 2013 when he was given six to nine months to live for an enlarged heart and denied a transplant at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta because of “a history of non-compliance” and behavioral issues.
Activists said the boy was discriminated against “because he was poor, black and had trouble with the law, which his mother said was for fighting,” the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Responding to national pressure, the hospital eventually relented and the surgery was successfully completed later that same month, the Daily News reported.
“So I can live a second chance. Get a second chance and do things I want to do,” Stokes told a local ABC affiliate at the time.
The teen died Tuesday after he was cut from the mangled vehicle that had nearly split in two, police said.
The pedestrian he hit, Clementina Hernandez, was in North Fulton Hospital in stable condition, police said.
The elderly Roswell woman said Stokes shot at her — pointing to bullet holes in her walls — after he kicked in her door and found her inside watching television, the ABC affiliate reported.
Stokes’ Facebook page had pictures of him showing off a pistol, the station said.