Families of stabbed Meriden teens challenge claims by police
By WFSB Staff
MERIDEN, CT (WFSB) -
The families of two stabbing victims are speaking out about the recent results of a police investigation.
A press conference was held Friday afternoon in direct response to the press release by Meriden police after they concluded their investigation into the double-stabbing.
Police said earlier this week that DeAndre Felton and DeShawn Jones were the aggressors in an attack on Kensington Avenue last month.
On the night of Sept. 21, the Meriden police Department received a 911 call from a woman who said two young men had been stabbed on Kensington Avenue near Midstate Medical Center.
Police said there was an officer at the hospital investigating an unrelated incident, and that officer quickly responded to the scene. Medical staff quickly began rendering aid to both teenagers, Felton, 15, died from his injuries.
Jones, 13, was brought to Hartford Hospital where he underwent surgery and was listed in critical condition.
The Meriden Police Department quickly secured the scene and spoke with several witnesses, which helped them identify a person of interest within 22 hours of the double stabbing.
Witnesses to the double stabbing gave consistent accounts as to what happened prior to, during and after the incident.
The witnesses told police that Felton and Jones had been with them, as a group, at the Meriden Mall on Lewis Avenue prior to the double stabbing.
When the mall closed, the witnesses told police that they all gathered in the parking lot of the mall, where Felton and Jones, whom the witnesses claimed were both "high," made statements to the effect that they wanted to "look for trouble" and "beat someone up."
According to those witnesses, the group walked across Lewis Avenue and entered the north parking lot of the hospital.
Witnesses told police that as they all began to exit through the pedestrian-access gate leading to Kensington Avenue, Felton and Jones broke from the group and began running along Kensington Avenue where they both jumped a man from behind and began assaulting him.
The witnesses said they didn't know the attack was about to take place, and a few moments later, the witnesses told police that the two teens ran back to the group and both collapsed from stab wounds.
The unidentified man who stabbed them ran away in the opposite direction.
Based upon the investigation, the man who was attacked from behind was identified and located and willingly cooperated with police.
According to police, the statement he made was consistent with eyewitness accounts of the incident. He gave police the pocketknife that he used in the incident, police said.
He said he wasn't aware that he had killed Deandre and police said he became visibly shaken and upset when he learned that information.
The identity of this male is not being released at this time as the investigation is continuing. The state attorney's office will determine if the man is charged with any crimes in the incident.
The Meriden mayor has requested that Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has the medical examiner's office expedite the autopsy and toxicology results.
At the press conference Friday afternoon, the parents of both boys claim they were attacked and it was racially motivated.
"We've got two individuals who were walking, talking, laughing," said Rev. Dante Moss. "Two individuals being nothing more than kids."
Moss questioned the actions of the man, who stabbed Felton and Jones.
"He did not call police. He did not call 911," Moss said. "He did not say I pulled out a knife and stabbed children."
Moss compared the double stabbing in Meriden to the shooting of Florida teenager Treyvon Martin, who was shot and killed by a neighborhood watch coordinator. George Zimmerman was not originally charged in the shooting of Martin.
"But what makes this different is there is a voice that survived," he said.
Jones will talk publicly when he is ready, according to Moss. His mother has not allowed him to speak with the Meriden Police Department at this time.
"As sad as we are. This man is still out on streets," said DeShawn's mother Alexis Jones. "My son is sitting home trying to recover. He is 13 years old."
The family of Jones has reached out to Martin's mother attorney for the advice on how to proceed in the incident.
"This is to a great point another Treyvon Martin incident," Moss said. "Do I want this? No, I don't but this is what it is."
After the Meriden Police Department released their findings, Felton's family spoke to WFSB and said they are disputing what happened that night.
"He was a leader," said DeAndre's mother Valda Felton. "He's been there for other kids trying to pull them up and guide them, so it's a little hard to believe."
She went on to say that she's heartbroken.
"It's heartbreaking to hear all these things," she said. "It just doesn't seem right. I know how I raised my child."
Felton's father agreed with his wife.
"He wouldn't do that, number one," Gary Felton said. "And they say there's some kind of camera, we want to see that video."
Copyright 2012 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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