Suspects in murder of Georgia teen arrested, held without bond

"You know, we don’t know the kids. We don’t know their backgrounds. We don’t know their story. They’re forgiven from me," Craig DeWitt, Elijah's father said.

Joshua Young Youngsville North Carolina

The two men who allegedly shot and killed 18-year-old Elijah DeWitt, a rising football star who got into an altercation with the men in Lawrenceville, Georgia on October 5, appeared in court on Wednesday where the judge decided they were a flight risk and would be held without bond. 

"You know, we don’t know the kids. We don’t know their backgrounds. We don’t know their story. They’re forgiven from me," Craig DeWitt, Elijah's father said, according to local news

The two men, 19-year-old Chandler Richardson and 18-year-old  Kemare Bryan were charged with murder, malice murder, aggravated assault, and possession of a firearm during commission of a felony. A Gwinnett County Court judge told them both, "you're going to be here a while" after their bail was denied," The Daily Mail reports.

On Wednesday, October 5th, Elijah Dewitt, who was a well-known football star at his Jefferson High School, was waiting outside a Dave & Busters for his girlfriend as the two were on a date. The restaurant and video game hotspot was located in Sugarloaf Mills Mall, 30 miles northeast of Atlanta.

Richardson and Bryan encountered Dewitt where they allegedly got into a fight and then shot the teen. The two fled and Dewitt's girlfriend of four years, Bailey Reidling, found him dead and in a pool of blood.

"I run over to Elijah, and he's on the ground, and I go right over to him, and he mouths to me — the last word he said to me was 'help,'" Reidling said, according to Fox News.

Dewitt's mother said that her son was in the "wrong place at the wrong time" and she didn't believe her son knew his assailants, Yahoo! News reports.

But News Nation reports that authorities do believe the suspects and victim "were familiar with each other and believe an altercation took place before the shooting."

The two alleged murderers absconded to South Carolina, but were arrested and extradited to Georgia. Surveillance footage from Gwinnett County shows the two suspects being processed.

During their Wednesday court appearance the judge said that a Superior Court judge would have to eventually set a bond for their multiple felonies. According to the Daily Mail, "The suspects frowned during their court appearances."

DeWitt had been praised by NFL's Cam Newton for his talents as a wide receiver. The community gathered on Tuesday for the a visitation at Jefferson Church and then again at his funeral on Wednesday.

A GoFundMe has been set up for Dewitt's family to cover expenses.

A teacher at Jefferson High School, Tanisha Gales, said, "teachers are rallying around the students and just making sure they’re doing well, if not just showing love to just make sure they get through this."

"This has shown me the real true meaning of community. It was hard to see young men shedding tears over their friend, you know, when you work so close together, you’ve grown up playing sports together it becomes a brotherhood. It’s really going to impact them on Friday when they start back on that field and he’s no longer there," Gales added.


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