According to Interim Police Chief Jason Busby, investigators were continuing to interview witnesses regarding the case Monday.
The robbery appears to have taken place sometime after 8 a.m. Friday. Earnest Jenkins, 75, the owner of the store, was dead from a gunshot wound when officers arrived. The suspect in the robbery was also wounded by a gunshot and was airlifted to University Hospital in Birmingham. Busby said the suspect was still in the hospital Monday afternoon, but he was expected to live.
Busby said he could not release the name of the suspect, but confirmed he is a 15-year-old white male.
Two other people, a male and a female, were also being questioned, although it appeared that neither had actually been inside the store when the shooting started.
“We can’t rule anything out at this point,” Busby said. “We’re looking at all possible angles.”
In Alabama, a person who commits a serious violent crime when they are 16 years old or older are automatically certified as adults for trial purposes. Since the likely suspect in this case in only 15, he will have to be certified through a closed judicial hearing. Even after being certified as an adult, he will still have the right to apply for being tried as a juvenile offender.
Juvenile offender cases are tried by a judge only and the verdict is sealed, but a person convicted as a juvenile offender can be sentenced to actual prison time.
Anyone with information about this incident should contact the Talladega Police Department at 256-362-4508 or call the city’s anonymous tip line at 256-299-0011.
Contact Chris Norwood at firstname.lastname@example.org.