Trial ahead for alleged York High football-game shooter
A 15-year-old is one step closer to trial for allegedly shooting two men and endangering about 2,000 people at a York High football game after charges against him were forwarded to York County Court at his preliminary hearing Friday.
Stephon Damieen Brown, of Reading, remains in York County Prison on $250,000 bail, charged as an adult with two counts of aggravated assault, 2,000 counts of reckless endangerment and one count each of carrying a firearm without a license, illegal firearm possession by a minor and criminal mischief.
Brown spent five weeks on the lam before being captured in a Lancaster home Oct. 14.
York City Police said he has family in York City, and it's believed he was living in York before the double shooting.
Known as "Mouse," Brown is accused of shooting York City brothers Darius Allen, 24, and Antwan Jackson Jr., 20, about 9:30 p.m. Sept. 9 outside the Small Athletic Field football stadium toward the end of William Penn Senior High School's home opener against Lancaster County's McCaskey High School.
Police filed the 2,000 counts of reckless endangerment against Brown after estimating the attendance inside Small Athletic Field the night of the shooting.
York City Police Detective George Ripley testified Friday at the preliminary hearing.
Caught on video: Under questioning by chief deputy prosecutor David Maisch, Ripley recounted what he saw on security video from the property, and he also spoke about the police investigation.
According to Ripley, there was a verbal disagreement inside the stadium, which then moved outside. The three people involved grew to eight, he said, and included Allen, Jackson and Brown's friend.
But it appeared the confrontation resolved itself, and Allen and Jackson started to walk away, the detective said.
Something caused Allen to turn around, at which point Brown shot him, Ripley said. After Allen was shot, Jackson started to chase down Brown but also was shot by Brown, according to the detective.
"You see people in the parking lot, flinching and taking cover, including the police officers there," Ripley testified.
At the time, there was a crowd of people in the parking lot that included families with little children, who also were forced to duck and run for cover, the detective said.
Duck and cover: Additionally, Brown fired in the direction of the still-filled stadium, thereby endangering those inside, according to Ripley.
"You can see people ducking and covering in the stadium," he said.
Three vehicles were struck by bullets as well, causing thousands of dollars in damage, Ripley said.
Under cross-examination by defense attorney Korey Leslie, Ripley acknowledged he could not actually see a gun in Brown's hand in the video, only Brown pointing something at the brothers before they were shot.
Allen was shot in the stomach, while Jackson was shot in the upper right side of his back.
Two shooters: Ripley said it appears there were two shooters — that Brown was firing with a .40-caliber, and that a second person fired a .380 firearm toward Brown. Neither weapon has been recovered, he said.
According to the detective, it was not a shootout. He said the second person didn't begin firing until after both brothers had been shot and Brown was fleeing.
Also testifying Friday was Allen, who said he was approached by someone who told him, "You're not safe."
Allen said he turned and asked the person, "Who you talking to," at which point the person "pulled out a gun and shot me in my stomach."
Allen said he fell to the ground and that his brother started chasing the shooter but also ended up being shot.
Didn't ID shooter: Allen said he couldn't identify the person who shot him, but he acknowledged that after being shown a photo lineup with Brown's image, he told detectives he was 65 percent sure Brown was the shooter.
"I said it looked like him ... (that) it could be that one," the victim said.
Maisch also called Northern York County Regional Police Detective Bill Haller to the stand, but his testimony wasn't necessary because the defense stipulated Haller would testify he was the law-enforcement officer who was able to identify the shooter in the video as being Brown.
After determining enough evidence exists for Brown to stand trial, District Judge Linda Williams set his formal court arraignment for Dec. 30.
Asked whether Allen is cooperating with the investigation, Maisch would only say, "I'll let you make that determination."
The prosecutor said he expects the defense will file a motion seeking to move the case to juvenile court, known as a juvenile decertification hearing.
Lt. Troy Bankert, who supervises the city detective bureau, has said Brown also is a suspect in several other city shootings.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.