Local News

Teens Arrested for Murder of Daughtry's Aunt

Posted January 6, 2000

— Three teens accused of killing an 89-year-old Newton Grove woman are expected in court Friday, the same day Elleze Kennedy will be buried.

Authorities arrested 18-year-old Bryan Bell, 18-year-old Lamont Williams and 17-year old Antwaun Sims Thursday and charged them with Kennedy's murder.

Police say the three chose their victim completely at random and that robbery may have been a motive for the crime.

The teens are no strangers to crime. Police say all three either have adult or juvenile records.

Bell, Williams and Sims are being held without bond and investigators say more charges against them will probably be filed.

Newton Grove Police say the community helped solved the crime. They also credit Stephen Darden for helping in the investigation.

Darden knew the suspects and helped police because he thought it was the right thing to do.

"It was wrong what they did," Darden says. "If they did it, they've got to do the time for it."

Darden says everyone needs to pull together to stop crime in their neighborhoods. He also says the crime hurt the whole community of Newton Grove.

Family and friends remembered Kennedy inside a standing-room-only wake in Newton Grove. The line outside spoke to the kind of person she was.

"It's just heartbreaking to know we live the best life we can, yet in the end this is what comes out," said friend Mattie Bell.

Funeral services for Kennedy were held Friday morning in Newton Grove.

Kennedy's nephew, gubernatorial candidate Leo Daughtry, is putting his campaign on hold for a few days so the family can be together.

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