Two teenagers are in custody and facing murder charges for their alleged roles in a fatal Marietta gang-related shooting last month.
Harrison Summerour, 16, and Nicholas Palmer, 17, will both be tried as adults in the death of Miles Saunders, 17, whose body was found inside his Wilson Circle residence on Aug. 27, 2017, after a 911 call reported someone had been “accidentally shot.”
According to arrest warrants obtained by 11Alive’s Jon Shirek, both suspects are members of the Crips, a violent street gang that, according to Cobb police, are known for committing murders, burglaries, thefts, aggravated assaults and other crimes throughout the county.
The warrants state both Summerour and Palmer were armed when they came to Saunders’ residence; Summerour with a .22 caliber pistol and Palmer with a .40 caliber Glock and a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson.
The warrants claim Summerour fatally shot Saunders in the head, and also pointed his gun at another victim, Carrington Bullard, who was seemingly uninjured in the altercation.
Summerour is facing two counts of aggravated assault with a weapon; street gang terrorism/criminal gang activity; and possession of a pistol by a minor, as well as felony murder.
Besides felony murder, Palmer is charged with street gang terrorism/criminal gang activity, and possession of a pistol by a minor.
Police say Summerour and Palmer killed Saunders on behalf of their gang, the Crips. It was a relative of one of the suspects who called 911 to say there had been an “accidental shooting” at the house.
“Through interviews of witnesses, and interviews of who was actually there on the scene, they were able to determine that the shooting was not an accident, and they have now pressed charges against those two individuals,” said Off. Chuck McPhilamy of Marietta police.
Police are still investigating why the teens allegedly targeted Saunders.
Police in Marietta and Cobb County say they are fighting what they call an uptick of gang activity that communities everywhere are facing.
“Anywhere between a low of 40 and a high of 90 percent of violent crime is committed by gang members,” said Cobb County D.A. Vic Reynolds.
Reynolds said Georgia’s anti-gang law is one of the nation’s toughest, and both teens are charged with violating the anti-gang law in addition to murder, which could add years to their sentences if convicted.
Reynolds says the community needs to help children before they’re lured into gangs.
“What can we do to make sure these kids have another option,” Reynolds asked, “where we won’t see them in the criminal justice system?”
Miles Saunders’ mother declined to comment on the arrests. But on her home’s front door is a display of love for her son, and on her Facebook page is a message to the world:
“My beautiful son, Miles. Rest in Peace, my angel.”