MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A 15-year-old charged with murder in a pastor’s shooting death that has rocked the community appeared in Juvenile Court for a hearing Wednesday.
The boy will return for another hearing Aug. 1 to determine whether his case will be transferred to adult court. He already was on probation for an earlier case.
The District Attorney’s Office said they are asking to transfer the 15-year-old to adult court and will file the paperwork before the Aug. 1 court date.
The city is in mourning after beloved pastor Autura Eason-Williams was shot and killed during a carjacking outside of her Whitehaven home Tuesday.
A 15-year-old was charged with first-degree murder among other charges, and a 16-year-old was charged with theft of property.
Law enforcement said the teens were also involved in a second carjacking, about eight hours after Eason-Williams’ death.
The victim told officers she was carjacked in a driveway of a home off Hunters Rest in Cordova, located about 30 minutes away from the pastor’s home.
People we talked to who live in the Cordova neighborhood were left rattled.
“And then to hear it just happened across the street and I have kids so it made me never want to leave my car out there,” one woman said.
The incidents prompted Memphis Police Chief CJ Davis to talk about the need for community involvement with young people and address the boldness of recent crimes.
“Brazen, bold, heinous. We want our citizens to help us protect them as well,” MPD Chief Davis said.
New stats from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation show juvenile crime is up 7% in the state in 2021 compared to 2019.
This comes as Memphis Police told us so far this year there has been a 44% increase in reported carjackings so far this year compared to this time last year.