Erie Police: 14-Year Old Killed Teen For Bicycle
Police now have a 14-year-old suspect in custody, after weekend of gun violence claims a life.
An 18-year-old was shot and killed Saturday, while riding his bike on East 8th street.
Monday afternoon, the suspect turned himself in to police.
14-year-old Derrys Sanders is facing felony charges as an adult, charges that include homicide, robbery and aggravated assault. Police say the motive was robbery, and he killed for a bicycle.
Officers took Sanders to the Erie county prison, where he remains without bond.
On Saturday afternoon, police say Sanders started following a group of kids riding their bikes, near 6th and German.
He jogged alongside 18-year old Jacob Pushinsky and demanded his bicycle, Pushinsky refused.
That's when police say he grabbed the victim's bike handle and said two more times, "give me the bike." When Pushinsky refused again, Sanders pulled out a gun and shot him once, killing him.
The victim's younger brother and two other friends with them witnessed the murder.
Erie Police Chief Randy Bowers says this crime is tragic, all the way around, "The victim, his family has lost him forever. And for a 14-year old to carry out an act of violence at this level, it's hard to figure out why it happens, but it did," said Chief Bowers.
Chief Bowers says this is another example of how the community needs to come together to fight youth gun violence, "We'll continue to work with the community and hopefully there are some answers we can come up with to curb this kind of behavior and stand up as a community and stick up and say we're not going to tolerate this violence," Chief Bowers added.
It's something a group of men called Blue Coats have been doing.
Daryl Craig and Curtis Jones Jr. are part of the Blue Coats, a group of men sending the message of hope to Erie youth.
They're committed to keeping kids out of trouble, by mentoring and supporting them, and offering them alternatives to guns, "To know that you can lose your life over a bicycle, trying to hold on to your property is freighting," said Jones Jr. "We're talking about violence but whatever we give attention to just grows. Everybody and everyone in the community who cares, we need to start changing our language and state changing the way we think" Jones added.
And this crime hit close, they knew both the victim and suspect in this case.
Sickened by it all, Craig sends a message he hopes will resonate with the community, "The only thing coming from that lifestyle is jail, institution and death," said Craig. "To anybody that's giving access for a 14-year-old to have a gun shame on you, shame on you! It's the most horrible thing that you can do is to give a child access to a gun," Craig added.