Back in September of 2013 in Dallas a very senseless crime was perpetrated against 8-year-old Donald Maiden Jr. Donald was celebrating his birthday and playing tag. Apparently, this angered 46-year-old Brian Cloninger who had been seen brandishing a gun earlier in the day. As Donald came near his vehicle, Cloninger shot the child in the face. The little boy ran screaming into his house.
Bystanders asked Cloninger if he shot the little boy and he responded, “Yes, I shot him … because I wanted to.”
Donald is still coping with his injury and the psychological trauma of the incident. The family has avoided public contact to protect the little boy until the trial of his shooter. Cloninger originally had a bail off $2.2 million but it was reduced due to his income. Since then, the bail was raised again when it was found that Cloninger’s wife lied under oath on the witness stand in October of 2013. The judge raised his bail even higher to $5 million because of these falsehoods.
Maiden may never regain feeling in his jaw and suffers significant trauma.
“He tells us he’s afraid, he’s afraid to go to sleep at night, unless all the lights are on. He only stays right by the door. He’s afraid the guy’s going to come back after him,” said his grandmother, Sharon Locklin.
The family attempted to raise money online to help with the recovery and numerous surgeries he has undergone, but only raised $1,000.
Cloninger will have his next court date on March 5, 2014, and is charged only with injury to a child, which is a first-degree felony.