They appeared in waves, some still looking tough, others looking scared; some sobbing, others hiding all emotion; all of them charged with murder.
Six teenage girls are among 12 suspects who were arraigned Thursday in the fatal shooting of 15-year-old Aliyah Smith in early January. According to police, Smith was shot while hiding in a house full of people on Nedra Court following an encounter with one of the girls the night before. Dozens of family members and friends packed the courtroom in support of the suspects. Also present was the victim’s mother
.Outside the Sacramento County jail Thursday, a tearful Catrina Kilgore talks about the death of her daughter Aliyah Smith.
Twelve suspects, eight of them not old enough to vote, were arraigned Thursday in their first courtroom appearance since being arrested Tuesday.
Each teen stands accused of murder – to be tried as an adult – in the fatal shooting of 15-year-old Aliyah Smith, a crime police allege stemmed from a dust-up between girls the night before.
They also were charged with one count each of discharging a firearm into an occupied dwelling: Smith was hiding inside a Nedra Court home full of people when she was fatally shot.
During the highly emotional arraignment, the defendants came before Sacramento Superior Court Judge Ernest W. Sawtelle in groups. First, the adult men, wearing the familiar orange uniform of the Sacramento County Main Jail: Marschell Brumfield Jr., 19; Marcel Bullard Jr., 18; and D’Andre Monroe, 18.
Then, the boys, with the blue-and-white uniform of juvenile hall: Omar Davis and Tyrell Penney, both 17.
Next came the girls, shackled together, some of them weeping openly: Mary Adams, 15; Shavana Adams, 17; Talisha Harston, 16; Brielle Randell, 15; Natosha Rassberry, 16; and Loren Searcey, 15.
Last was 18-year-old Alison Williams, who subtly shook her head as Sawtelle read the charges against her.
Dozens of family members and friends packed the courtroom in support of the suspects, some of them hugging and weeping in the audience.
Smith’s mother, Catrina Kilgore, also sat in the audience, dabbing her eyes as she quietly cried.
Rassberry was appointed a public defender, who said he did not know enough about the case yet to comment. The remaining defendants will be represented by attorneys, to be determined later, from Sacramento County Conflict Criminal Defenders.
Sacramento police say Smith and one of the suspects fought the night of Jan. 2. Later, they allege, the suspects assembled and went to Nedra Court to exact revenge.
Bullard and Monroe are the accused gunmen. Police say the other 10 face murder charges because they went to Nedra Court to hurt Smith.
By Kim Minugh: Sacramento Bee