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19-Year-Old Fatally Shot after Knocking on Wrong Door in Atlanta, According to Police

Claudine Varela
Apr 02, 2019
05:31 A.M.
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Friends and family of a 19-year-old boy are in disbelief over his senseless death after he mistakenly knocked on the wrong door. The teen thought he was visiting his girlfriend's home when the man who owned the house shot him to death.

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A tragic story unfolded in Atlanta involving a 19-year-old boy whose only mistake was to knock on the wrong door. Omarian Banks thought he was at the doorstep of his girlfriend’s new home when he was shot and killed.

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A FATAL KNOCK ON THE DOOR

On Friday at around 12:30 am, Banks’ intention was to visit his girlfriend Zsakeria Mathis who just recently moved to a new apartment complex. Banks’ cousin, Rakiya Hawkins told ABC News he was even on FaceTime with Mathis before he knocked on the door he thought was hers.

"I just want to understand why he had to take my son's life. My son was just confused. He just went to the wrong door and he was begging for his life.”

According to Police Sgt. John Chafee, upon realizing he was in the wrong house, Banks attempted to walk away but the real owner of the house, Darryl Bynes confronted him from his balcony.

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After an exchange of words, Bynes, 32, fired at Banks using a handgun. Banks was shot in the neck and died instantly.

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THE SHOOTERS' DEFENSE

Bynes was arrested on Friday and charged with murder the following day. He initially claimed he shot Banks for self-defense but authorities later learned he was shooting at Banks from his balcony as the teen was walking away from his home.

Bynes cousin, Mackayla Johnson defended him by telling ABC News he was “a loving family man” who had no criminal record and intended no harm on anybody. She also revealed his truck was stolen that week and was only trying to protect his family. Bynes has five children.

“I heard him say, ‘Sorry, I’m at the wrong house.’ Then the man said, ‘No you’re not. N****, you at the right house.’ And he shot two more times.”

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SENTIMENTS OF THE VICTIM'S FAMILY

Meanwhile, Banks’ family struggled with their loss. His mother, Lisa Johnson couldn’t understand how a simple mistake of knocking on the wrong door could cause her son’s life. She said,

"I just want to understand why he had to take my son's life. My son was just confused. He just went to the wrong door and he was begging for his life.”

Johnson described Banks as “a typical teenager” who worked at McDonald’s and “was getting his life together, just trying to make his mom and family proud.”

"My son was in the wrong place at the wrong time," she added.

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GIRLFRIEND'S ACCOUNT OF WHAT HAPPENED

Banks’ girlfriend also confirmed she was on the phone with him before the shooting and described him as a good person. She also recalled hearing the conversation between Banks and Byrnes that transpired before he died.

“I heard him say, ‘Sorry, I’m at the wrong house.’ Then the man said, ‘No you’re not. N****, you at the right house.’ And he shot two more times,” she told WSB-TV.

“He wasn't doing anything wrong," she likewise explained to ABC News. "He just made a mistake by going to the wrong door. He had a big heart and loved everyone that was around him."

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ANOTHER CASE OF MISTAKEN HOME THAT CAUSED A PERSON'S LIFE

This story is all too familiar. It is a painful reminder of what happened to 26-year-old Botham Jean who was shot to death by a police officer who mistook his house for hers. Jean was sitting in his living room when police officer Amber Guyger, thinking she was entering her own home, mistakenly entered Jean’s. Believing the young man was an intruder in her own home, she shot him fatally. Guyger surrendered herself to authorities and was charged with murder for the September 2018 shooting. She was also terminated from her job. She’s currently awaiting her trial which will commence in August.

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