Local News

Parents Protest East Wake Arrests

Posted March 10, 1997 12:00 a.m. EST

— Police say the public is safe now from a band of teens suspected of terrorizing the people of Wake County in their homes and businesses. The teens appeared in court Monday, accused of more than 20 violent armed robberies and a triple murder.

Investigators say the teens have apparently been living in hotels throughout the area in order to elude police and continue a brazen crime spree. They were arrested Saturday morning for, ironically, a broken headlight.

Relatives of the suspects gathered outside the Wake County Sheriff's Office Monday morning. Antina Mitchell, mother of one of the suspects, said she thinks the police arrested the teens because they wanted to arrest someone quickly.

But police say they have identified three of the suspects, in connection with the brutal killing of three people in Zebulon last week. Two others have been identified in connection with armed robberies in the same area.

Sharlene Fogg, mother of another suspect, said both she and her son are in shock.

Sheriff John Baker is convinced the right men are in custody, but says he's concerned about seeing more teens involved in serious crime. He says more parents need to exercise discipline and that parents, communities and churches need to join forces to prevent this sort of trouble with their children.

District Attorney Colin Willoughby says he has more than enough evidence against the suspects to take to the grand jury. He would not discuss the evidence.

The parents WRAL-TV5'sKelly Wright spoke to said, with the exception of one, that they didn't know where their children were the nights of the crimes.

The suspects were assigned court-appointed attorneys Monday. Their next court appearances are scheduled for March 31.