LAS VEGAS – New details in the murder of Giovanni Melton continue to emerge. According to court documents, the 14-year-old was living alone because he couldn’t get along with his stepmother.
Last week Melton was allegedly shot and killed by his own father.
“It’s important for us to figure out as a community how we debrief after something like this,” said Liz Ortenburger, Safe Nest.
Ortenburger, a leader at Safe Nest, which handles domestic violence and child abuse, says Melton’s case needs attention.
Records show family services had dealt with the Melton’s before.
“When an investigator goes over what actual story or picture they’re seeing versus what reality is sometimes hard to decipher,” said Ortenburger.
Henderson Police says Giovanni was murdered on Thursday by his father, 53-year-old Wendell Melton.
The arrest report reveals, Wendell told detectives his son lived alone to get away from his new stepmother. Wendell said he had only visited Giovanni six-or-seven times since the teen moved into the unit in March, but he paid the rent.
According to the arrest report, Wendell told authorities that when he went to the apartment midday the day Giovanni died, he caught his son home, not in school, smoking marijuana.
The two argued; there was a fight. Wendell says Giovanni attacked him, and that’s when his gun accidentally went off.
The arrest report isn’t the only official document that gives an idea of what was going on inside this apartment. There are also forms from Clark County Department of Family Services.
CCDFS has six different reports since 2004. The most recent was in April, one month before Giovanni moved into his apartment.
Giovanni Melton’s child death report shows two of those six abuse allegations were substantiated. Court records show at different times Giovanni and his older brother were abandoned by their parents.
There was a custody battle, accusations of threats and assault.
“This is an opportunity for CPS and anybody that engaged with this young man to look back and see, ‘what did we miss’ because, obviously, we missed something,” said Ortenburger.
Giovanni’s dad, Wendell Melton is charged with open murder, child abuse and illegally owning a gun. He is in the Henderson jail.
Clark County says it could not provide any more information on earlier cases