PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Allegheny County homicide detectives are working to track down a 15-year-old murder suspect who’s accused of gunning down another teenager outside a crowded local McDonald’s restaurant.
Police have issued an arrest warrant for Akeem Willie of Homewood in connection with Wednesday’s shooting that claimed the life of Dalyn Jones, 18.
Shots erupted in the parking lot of the fast food restaurant on Frankstown Road in Penn Hills around 5:30 p.m.
According to investigators, Jones’ death was the result of a pre-arranged drug deal that ended in gunfire.
Investigators say it started when Willie and another person got into a car in which Jones was a passenger.
“The two individuals that got in attempted to rob him and the driver of the car,” Allegheny County Police Superintendent Charles Moffatt explained. “We believe at this time that there’s approximately a half an ounce of marijuana that was in dispute.”
Police say Jones was shot four times; and they say they believe he returned fire before his death.
Willie is now wanted on charges including criminal homicide, robbery, endangering the welfare of another person and weapons charges.
“We assume he’s out running,” Superintendent Moffatt told reporters. “He’s armed and dangerous.”
Officials have been reviewing tapes from several surveillance cameras outside the McDonald’s restaurant. Moffatt described some of the footage as “valuable,” and would not rule out the possibility of additional arrests in the case.
The suspect’s cousin, Rodney Culberson, claims Willie is being wrongly accused.
“I believe it’s a misunderstanding,” Culberson told KDKA-TV. “Stuff happens. Sometimes you’re in the wrong spot at the wrong time or the right place at the wrong time.”
Culberson says he’s praying that his cousin turns himself in to authorities. Meanwhile, though, Allegheny County homicide investigators are “actively searching” for Willie. They’re working with the U.S. Marshal’s office to try to take the teenage suspect into custody.