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Published On: Thu, Jan 7th, 2016

Abrion Witcher arrested in connection with the shooting death of teen Gabriel Wallace

A man wanted in connection with the December shooting death of a Florida teen was arrested at a Pinellas Park motel Wednesday afternoon.

St. Petersburg police got a tip through Crimestoppers that Abrion Witcher, 18, was staying at the Express Inn and officers took him into custody as he was leaving the hotel. Witcher was wanted in connection with the shooting death of Gabriel Wallace, 17, in December.

“This morning when I woke up, I told my boyfriend that I just felt like he’s going to get picked up today and it happened,” said Peggy Elias, Wallace’s grandmother.

Abrion Witcher

Abrion Witcher

Wallace was shot outside a St. Petersburg apartment complex after the two teenagers argued. Witnesses said they were fighting about Wallace’s sister.

“For him to die because someone disrespected his sister, then you’re going to put a gun to him and kill him, that’s a cowardly act. That was a real cowardly act,” said Betty Johnson, Wallace’s cousin.

Family members said Wallace was a good kid who was trying to find a job and plan for his future.

They said the last few weeks have been difficult.

“We have each other, that is a healing point. Then we have the man upstairs that we pray to everyday and ask that justice be brought without anymore harm,” said Johnson.

The family did express frustration that Witcher was able to elude police for weeks.

“Whoever was helping him hide, they need to be arrested with him,” said Elias.

The family said they’re relieved about the arrest but they also call it “bittersweet.”

“It’s going to take some time, it’s really going to take some time because you can’t bring Gabe back,” said Elias.

Witcher is expected to make his first court appearance on the charge of second-degree murder on Thursday.

 

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About the Author

- Sierra is a copy writer for The Dispatch, focusing primarily on pop culture and stories linked to the latest Christian headlines, both in the U.S. and overseas.

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