Rebekah Sager


Could You Forgive The Teen Who Shot Your Son?

One dad did. Now he’s teaching middle schoolers about compassion in an effort to stop youth violence.

On the night Azim Khamisa learned that his son Tariq had been murdered, he had what he calls an out-of-body experience — a moment that led him to an almost spiritual partnership and a practically otherworldly example of forgiveness.

Tariq Khamisa was murdered 22 years ago in 1995. He was making a pizza delivery to an apartment in San Diego, when he arrived and was confronted by four teenage boys intending to rob him. One of the teens was 14-year-old Tony Edward Hicks. According to Hicks’ grandfather, an 18-year-old that Hicks had been hanging out with at the time handed the teen a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun and directed him to shoot Tariq if he refused to give up his cash or the pizza.

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