Victim’s Voice: “Why did they take my son’s life? I’m physically, mentally and emotionally destroyed”


2021 ranked as the deadliest year for homicides in East Baton Rouge Parish with 170 people killed. One of those was 29-yr-old Kendrick Demond Gibson.

Gibson was shot three times on Nov. 23, 2021 around 10pm in the 2700 block of Linwood Dr. His mother, Vanessa Clark, said police found her son on a porch outside, dead on the scene.

“The police told me there was a struggle inside the house when Kendrick was shot. He bled out at the porch of a home. His 16-yr-old brother-in-law was arrested for the murder,” said Clark.

Despite an arrest in the case, Clark said there’s much more to the case, possibly more suspects. However, Clark believes police are not doing enough to make sure they look into every tip.

“They have cell phone messages saying how someone wanted him dead but nothing has been done. They keep telling me they have to wait on the district attorney,” said Clark.

Gibson was married. He left behind five children ranging in age from 1-yr-old to 7-yrs-old, a brother and sibling and a grieving mother.


“Why did they take my son’s life and take my son away from me? I’m physically, mentally and emotionally destroyed. I have to see a psychiatrist three times a week,” said Clark. “Kendrick was an outgoing person. He drove trucks and did various jobs. He was well loved by many. I won’t lie to you, but Kendrick had gone through mental health issues and been in various homes for that. My son had ADHD and he was on medication but that medicine messed him up pretty bad. He did drink but as far as doing drugs, I never saw him doing drugs but I did see him drinking.”

“I know there are so many homicides in Baton Rouge but don’t try to throw my son’s murder under the rug. I want justice for my son. He didn’t deserve what he got. He was murdered and he was well loved by many. That was my baby. He wasn’t just another murder statistic in Baton Rouge. Yes, last year was the deadliest year and my son was one of people killed in 2021,” said Clark. “I’m devastated about it. I had lots of family members who have been murdered. My cousin’s son was murdered in a park at 16-yrs-old only. He was murdered on Dec. 22nd last year and his funeral was on Jan. 5th, which was Kendrick’s birthday.”

Clark realizes there were 170 people killed last year in all of East Baton Rouge Parish, including her own son.

“I’m devastated by every homicide. My heart hurts for every mother, every parent because I understand that pain. My heart bleeds for them. If it wasn’t for my own  parents being here, I wouldn’t stay in Baton Rouge. I hate Baton Rouge. To all the other mothers who have lost their sons to gun violence, we have to stay prayed up at all times and keep the blood of Jesus over our children because God is the only protection we have. The justice system here in Baton Rouge is horrible.”

Clark said as a mother of a son who was murdered, she feels let down from every direction, the detectives, investigators, judges and even the mayor herself.

“Not enough is happening to prevent all the crime in this city. Every day, someone is being shot or killed. The mayor should be able to do more than she’s doing. All these meetings they keep calling to stop gun violence, well it’s not working. I don’t care who they need at this point. Call in the National Guard or whoever because the Baton Rouge Police Dept. can’t handle the crime alone. There aren’t enough homicide detectives to handle all the murders going on in Baton Rouge and mothers like me become the true victims not once but twice. I already lost my son. That was me being a victim the first time. Now, since I lost my son, I’ve been a victim again with no help from anyone but I’m a suffering mother. I ask the chief and mayor, how would you feel if your own child was murdered? I bet you wouldn’t sit on it this long.

Plus, all these people who are let out for doing murders, they should never be let out because they’ll keep repeating it. That’s why we have so much crime and all this rap stuff, that’s what’s promoting it and drugs. People don’t want to work and make an honest living. They want to kill, steal and rob,” said Clark.

Clark said she did hear from District Attorney Hillar Moore after her son’s murder.

“He asked me how did I feel and what I think the young man should get. I told him, ‘he took a life so they should give him life’.”

Clark said she refuses to give up so when she had not heard much from the detectives assigned to her son’s case, she said she showed up at the Baton Rouge Police headquarters on Airline Hwy. to speak directly to the police chief.

“I showed up at BRPD headquarters about all this and said, ‘I needed to talk to Murphy Paul and I wasn’t leaving till I got some answers,’ but his secretary told me he wasn’t unavailable. I feel like he’s not doing a good enough job as the chief with all these innocent babies and people dying.”

Clark wrapped up saying gun violence & violence in general is increasing daily in Baton Rouge. She’s stuck because of her elderly parents, but she said people are going to start leaving Baton Rouge because of all the crime, if they’re not doing it already.

“If things don’t change, the police won’t be able to control the streets. In fact, they can’t control them now. The streets are going to take over if they haven’t already,” said Clark.

A hearing in Gibson’s case is scheduled for later in April 2022. Anyone with information on Gibson’s murder is asked to call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 344-STOP.  

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