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Gang Killing of 14-year-old Boy
COVINGTON, Ky. (Rich Jaffe) -- After a tremendous response from the community and quick work by police, eight people are now charged in the death of 19 year old Desean Peterson.
Thursday the six adults appeared in court for their pre-trial hearing. Local 12's Rich Jaffe was the only TV News reporter there, and he joins us from the newsroom with the details.
According to Covington police this was a flat out gang hit. It was retaliation for the theft of a small amount of marijuana by juveniles who hung out with Peterson.
But according to police it was organized and discussed for hours. The participants took a break, came to Cincinnati to buy the guns, went back to Covington, met again, then rolled out for vengeance.
The defendants, all but one facing charges of conspiracy to commit murder, filed into the courtroom to meet their attorneys. Two juveniles are also in custody.
Police say Desean Peterson was the leader of a group called Da Planes. They're defined as, "a group of friends who like to get into trouble together."
Somewhat different than the young men charged who belong to the opposition known as the Same 1 Gang. Detective Brian Cane says an ongoing feud between the two groups about the theft of a small amount of marijuana lead to a fight Saturday night at 1705 Garrard.
After the fight the six young men and others met at Mikel Holloway's Latonia Terrace apartment on Sunday and discussed retaliation. They took a break, headed to Cincinnati to buy guns and returned to the apartment with 2 shotguns and 2 handguns.
After more discussion they piled into three cars and headed again for 1705 Garrard, looking for Desean Peterson. Of particular interest was Eugene Smith.
Detective Cane says, "He placed himself as the operator of the vehicle as the shots came from his rear seat. Furthermore he indicated he fled the scene on the shots being fired and made his way back to the terrace and dropped off several individuals."
Upon arriving at the house, James Young allegedly yelled, "There's Sean P-shoot-shoot."
While the shots only came from the first vehicle allegedly driven by Smith, Reginald Bates was in the third vehicle. His father says his son has nothing to do with gangs.
Reginald Bates Sr. told Local 12 News, "Oh it's pitiful. The boy's a student in college. He was home trying to associate with so called friends he had when he came up. He's a sophomore at Eastern Kentucky University majoring in Homeland Security, we got to worry about this mess...being in the wrong place at the wrong time."
Mikyle Holloway is the only one of the bunch not charged with murder. He's charged for allegedly tampering with evidence.
He told police he, "Got rid of the gun that had the body on it."
Allegedly the 40 caliber handgun used to kill Peterson.
Holloway got rid of the gun by giving it to someone else, but police have not talked to that person and declined to name him. Clearly still an ongoing investigation, but no one else is expected to be charged.
The judge Thursday found there was probable cause for all six of the young men to be held and bound over to a grand jury.
Police say they believe the shooter is one of the juveniles and they will have hearings in the next few weeks.