State attorney files murder charges against teens

The State Attorney for the 8th Judicial Circuit has filed a complaint against three teens allegedly involved in a deadly shooting at the American Legion in Gainesville on June 24.

Five teenage victims attending a party that evening were shot and one victim, 13-year-old Christopher Mekhi Scott, died on June 27.

State Attorney Brian Kramer issued a statement on Tuesday afternoon announcing the upgrade of charges for suspects involved in the shooting based on new evidence.

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“Gainesville Police investigators identified the following individuals as suspects who were actively engaged in shooting firearms,” the statement said, naming Javari Doven Baptiste, 17, Christian Theotis Jones, 16, Jarquez Kerreim Mitchell, 17.

The updated charging information lists 11 criminal counts the state intends to prove, the statement continues. It cited Christian Theotis Jones as the alleged shooter who killed Scott, prompting a second degree murder charge.

“Baptiste, Jones and Mitchell have also been charged with second degree attempted murder by discharging a firearm which resulted in serious bodily injury to 4 juvenile victims,” according to the statement.

This story was updated to reflect the State Attorney’s error in the spelling of Javari Doven Baptiste’s name.

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