A horrible crime has rocked Memphis, with a beloved pastor needlessly killed by a deranged teen.
Around 4:15 p.m. on July 18, the teenager allegedly fatally shot Rev. Autura Eason-Williams while stealing her vehicle in Memphis, WHBQ-TV reported.
Keith Caldwell, senior pastor of Seay-Hubbard United Methodist Church in Nashville, told WKRN that the victim was speaking with a clergy member on the phone when she said she heard a noise outside.
When she went to investigate, Caldwell said the clergy member heard gunfire and phoned 911 to report the shooting.
According to police, the alleged shooter faces charges of first-degree murder, murder in perpetration of a robbery, especially aggravated robbery, carjacking and employment of a firearm during a dangerous felony.
A second suspect, a 16-year-old boy, was also taken into custody in connection with the carjacking and charged with theft of property.
The Shelby County District Attorney’s Office announced prosecutors would seek to have the younger boy tried as an adult, which is allowed under Tennessee allow for juveniles charged with serious offenses who are between 14 and 17 years of age, according to WHBQ-TV.
“Due to the facts of this case and this offender’s criminal history, I am seeking transfer of this case to adult court,” Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich said.
Eason-Williams, a wife and mother of four, was the District Superintendent for the Metro District of Memphis in the Tennessee-Western Kentucky Conference of the United Methodist Church, WKRN reported.
“These are minors whose minds haven’t even developed yet, and they’ve sentenced themselves to a lifetime of having this on their hands and on their hearts,” Caldwell said of the murder.