Police: York 14-year-old slain trying to buy gun in Reading

  • Police in Berks County say a York teen was killed while trying to buy a gun last week in Reading.
  • Reynold Henry, 22, is charged in the death of Bruce Criddell Jr., 14.
  • Henry was remanded to Berks County Prison without bail.

Authorities in Berks County say a York City 14-year-old was fatally shot last week while trying to buy a gun in Reading.

Reynold Henry

Reading Police say Reynold G. Henry, 22, met Bruce Criddell Jr. near a McDonald's in Reading before fatally shooting the teen. 

Criddell was weeks away from starting ninth grade at Helen Thackston Charter School, Principal Melissa Achuff said last week.

Henry, of Moss Street in Reading, is charged with first-degree murder, third-degree murder, carrying a firearm without a license, and two counts of aggravated assault, according to charging documents filed last week.

Incident: Reading Police responded to a shots-fired call in the 900 block of Mulberry Street at about 7:30 p.m. July 18.

When police arrived, they found Bruce unresponsive with a gunshot wound to his neck. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

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Police searched through two cellphones that were found on Bruce and found that he was speaking with a man on Facebook named Kenneth Agard, court documents state.

Bruce Criddell's Obituary on Reading Eagle

Agard — later identified as Henry — agreed to sell Bruce gun for $175, police said. Henry told Bruce to meet him at the McDonald's at 1001 N. Ninth St. in Reading and told him that he would be wearing an orange shirt, according to charging documents.

Teen killed in Reading attended Helen Thackston

Police say an acquaintance of Bruce's accompanied him, and the two met Henry at the McDonald's. According to charging documents, the two met with Henry and went down an alley, where Henry began shooting at them.

Police viewed video footage from the McDonald's that showed the three meeting close to the door of the restaurant, police said.

All of them walked east in the parking lot, and a second surveillance system showed them walking west into an alley directly off the 900 block of Mulberry Street, documents state.

Bruce Criddell Jr. Photo courtesy Theo C. Auman funeral home.

The camera did not capture the altercation, but police say Bruce's acquaintance was seen on camera ducking, then running east from the scene.

Police found three 9mm cartridge casings in the alley. Police say there was a blood trail from the alley that led to where Bruce was found.

Another surveillance system showed Bruce exiting the alley on the 900 block of Mulberry Street, where he fell to the ground and died, police said.

Additional surveillance footage showed Henry running south in the rear of the alley directly behind the 800 block of North 10th Street, court documents state.

Reading Police Sgt. Darrin C. Dougherty said Monday that Bruce is originally from Reading and has family in the city. He had come to Reading specifically to purchase the gun, he said.

Dougherty said Bruce's family was not aware he was in Reading at the time.

Henry was arrested Thursday, and he was remanded to Berks County Prison without bail. He does not have an attorney listed.

— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at cdornblaser@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @YDDornblaser.