Edio White, 18, and Conner Tucker, 15, have both been charged with first-degree murder, aggravated attempted robbery, and unlawful possession of a weapon over the death of Anthony Mason, 15, on Nov. 23, according to Daily Mail.
White and Tucker allegedly drove to Mason's house on Thanksgiving with premeditated plans to rob him during a staged firearm deal. According to police, the deal went south and the teens began to struggle over the firearm. Tucker allegedly pointed a gun at Mason and shot him in the head, killing him.
Text messages found on Mason's phone led investigators to Tucker, which allegedly resulted in a confession to the crime. The suspect then ousted White to authorities and said that he acted as a getaway driver, the outlet reports.
White confessed to driving the vehicle and told authorities that he knew Tucker was planning to rob Mason, according to Fox 13.
Tucker is being held at the juvenile detention center and White has been released by a judge on his own recognizance, which has sparked mass outrage.
Shelby County District Attorney's Office said in a statement, according to Local Memphis, that White was released on Nov. 27 after "the judge made the ROR (released on recognizance) decision."
Judge Bill Anderson ordered White to be released on his own recognizance despite both White's attorney and the DA's office recommending a $75,000 bond, Fox 13 reports.
In 2022, Democrat Shelby County District Attorney, Steve Mulloy, passed progressive criminal reform legislation that transformed the bail system over claims that the system was harder on both the poor and minorities. Defendants now receive hearings with counsel within 72 hours of arrest.
On the passed criminal reform legislation, Mulloy told Local Memphis: "This is an attempt to fix that."
"Under the old system, a judicial commissioner would make an off the top of their head determination about bail, and it was often unaffordable, and then people would languish behind the bars," Mulloy said.
Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn (TN) slammed the release of White on X and said: "After fatally shooting a 15-year-old in the head, the Memphis man responsible for his death has been released from custody.
"He wasn't even required to pay bond," she wrote. "Criminals belong behind bars. NOT out on the streets."
The Daily Mail reports that one week before the Thanksgiving murder, Judge Bill Anderson also released a suspect without bond who had been accused of killing a 20-year-old in a hit-and-run.
White's next court hearing is scheduled for Dec. 5 and Tucker will appear in court on Dec. 8.
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