An arrest has been made in the shooting last week that killed an innocent Columbia High School senior, police said.
“Yesterday … 16-year-old male was arrested in connection with this shooting,” new DeKalb County Police Chief Cedric Alexander told reporters Wednesday afternoon. “The shooting appeared to be gang-related.”
Alexander said 18-year-old Dominique Boyer, who was the only person struck by the hail of gunfire, was not the shooter’s target.
“He was a totally unintended victim,” the chief said.
Family members said Boyer was hit twice, in the head and chest.
The teenage suspect is being charged as an adult with murder, but is not being identified at this time, as police are seeking other possible suspects, Alexander said.
“We believe there might be one to three other suspects,” he said. “We want to make certain that we do this exactly right, because he is a juvenile. We don’t to lose this case on a technicality.”
Police said Boyer and some friends gathered after school last Thursday outside the Austin Oaks Apartment complex in the 4300 block of Glenwood Drive.
Witnesses told police a tan SUV pulled up and the passenger began shooting at the group.
The SUV, a Mercury Mountaineer, had been stolen from somewhere in the county earlier in the day, investigators said, and was found Friday.
DeKalb police Detective Lt. Mark Lavigne said the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office fugitive unit found the 16-year-old Tuesday in Atlanta and took him into custody without incident.
The apartment complex where the shooting occurred is also where two DeKalb County police officers working off-duty – Ricky Bryant Jr. and Eric Barker – were shot and killed in January 2008.
Their shooter, William Maurice Woodard, was convicted in October of murdering the officers.
Wednesday, Alexander acknowledged that crime at that apartment complex has been a growing concern, and police are taking steps to stem that tide.
“Clearly, there are some issues that are still very prevalent as it relates to crime … at that complex,” he said. “We are doing some very progressive things as we speak to go after those involved in those particular kind of activities, not just in that complex, but in the areas surrounding that complex.”
Police are asking that anyone with information about the shooting contact Crime Stoppers Atlanta at 404-57-8477. Anonymous tips are accepted, and a reward may be available for any information that leads to an arrest or prosecution.
Police continue to investigate.