Jemeker Hairston: The Queen Pin Comes to Christ
By Sarah Purnell
The 700 Club
Original Air Date: October 18, 2010
The FBI called her "Queen Pin". Jemeker Hairston ruled the tough streets of South Central L.A.
“I didn’t play when it came to delivering my drugs and getting my money," Jemeker says. "I was serious about the game.”
Jemeker was obsessed with power and control, something she picked up as a young girl.
“I was in the fourth grade, so probably about eight, nine years old. One day I came home and we were evicted from our home. I quite didn’t understand what was going on, but I knew that it wasn’t right. I just know that we were put out and had to stay in a motel.”
But Jemeker wanted a better life for herself and asked to live with her grandmother in Mississippi. Her mom agreed and scraped together enough money for a plane ticket. She lived there for six years and didn’t return to L.A. until she was 14. It wasn’t long before she met Daff.
“He had a certain charisma about himself. He was a hustler, and I knew he was because I would see him come in my neighborhood and gamble with the guys on the block. So he had a lot of money and seeing him with a lot of money attracted me.”
But Daff made his money as a marijuana dealer, and before long he drew Jemeker into the business. Now that Jemeker had money, her lifestyle began to change.
“Having money made me feel like I was in control. I felt like I can do anything that I wanted to do, because I had money and with money came people, with people came power and I enjoyed that.”
Jemeker and Daff started to sell cocaine. Their business and opulent lifestyle grew, establishing her and Daff as la’s biggest cocaine dealers. They married, and she became pregnant with her son, Anthony. After his birth, Jemeker soon realized that her lifestyle was not the best way to raise her son.
“It was so many things happening in the streets that I was talking to Daff and I was telling him, ‘Let’s move to Texas.’ My best girlfriend lived in Texas. He said, ‘Okay. You know, let’s talk about it.’ And the very next day he was killed.”
Daff had been shot in South Central Los Angeles.
“After Daff was killed, I went into hibernation for a little bit, because it was so hard for me to raise my son without his father.”
Jemeker took herself out of the game for a while, until one of her dealers convinced her to get back into the business.
“They were telling me that they needed me to supply drugs back to them, because they had a family and that’s all they knew, too. So in my mind I felt compelled that I needed to get back in the game to help them, because I was their connection to the drugs.”
She decided to broaden her business and opened an upscale, hair company in Hollywood
“I began to take the money that I made from the drug gang and I laundered it into a hair company. Pretend like I was this business lady that sold Italian hair that was imported from Italy, which it was. If I had to take care of my drug business, I would put on another hat and I was ‘Queen Pin.’”
Jemeker managed to hide her double life until one day, her reign as ‘Queen Pin’ came to an abrupt end.
“I ended up being on the run after an ex-boyfriend of mine got busted. In exchange for his freedom, he gave me up.”
So Jemeker skipped town. She left her son with her mother and used her drug connections to hide from the FBI. For 18 months she moved from town to town. It was her son that drew Jemeker back to Los Angeles and into the hands of the FBI.
“Out of the love for my son, I came to his graduation, and when I came to his graduation, I was arrested. It was the worst feeling that any mother could feel, for their child to see them get arrested… the worst feeling.”
The arrest was a wake-up call.
“I thought I had everything under control. But when they put those handcuffs on me, I was in their world, a different world that I’ve never experienced, that I’d never even thought that I would experience.”
The court found her guilty. As she waited for sentencing, she became desperate.
“I remember crying out to God and saying, ‘God, if you’re really God, get me out of this mess. I can’t handle this.’”
Jemeker went to a chapel service and asked the pastor to pray for her. When she returned to her cell, she poured out her heart to God.
“I remember getting on my bunk and putting the cover over my head, and I began to confess every sin for hours. I felt so pure and so clean and so refreshed and so new.”
That night she gave her life to Christ. A few weeks later she received her sentencing; it was lighter than she ever expected.
“I felt a sense of peace that God was with me, because I was looking at 25 to life and I was sentenced to 180 months.”
While Jemeker was in prison, she told her story to inmates and staff and prayed with them. After serving 12 years, she was released. She was reunited with her son and later married Champ. Jemeker has written the story of her life in a book called Queen Pin. She also writes letters of encouragement and hope to women who are incarcerated.
“You are looking at a miracle. I should be dead, but I’m alive for a reason to tell you that there is hope. My hope came through Jesus. He is alive. I am redeemed. I’m not just a conqueror; I’m more than a conqueror.”
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