Update at 5:30 p.m.: | Yvette Watkins, the mother of the 17-year-old suspect, told The Times earlier today that she knew very little about the allegations against her son, but that he was raised to know right from wrong.
She said her son had been a good and respectful student with a two-parent household. Contrary to what other media outlets have reported, the teen is not homeless. Police say he often chose to live away from the family home.
However, Watkins said he had taken a turn for the worst over the past couple of months, and his behavior began to change. But she had not seen this coming.
“Our heart goes out to the Peterson family. They have been torn apart,” she said. “And we’ve been torn apart, too. A piece of my heart has been snatched out of my chest.”
Original post:| A judge this afternoon found probable cause to hold a 17-year-old Seattle boy in detention in connection with a fatal shooting Feb. 23 in Seattle’s Greenwood neighborhood.
The suspect, a Ballard High School student, waived his appearance at the detention hearing in the King County Juvenile Detention Center. The boy has not been charged.
The boy was arrested Saturday at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, where police said he was about to board a plane for Atlanta.
According to an affidavit of probable cause outlining the police case, the boy told detectives he confronted the victim, David L. Peterson, in the 8500 block of 1st Avenue Northwest and attempted to steal his cell phone. Peterson walked away and called 911, at which point the boy confronted him a second time and shot Peterson in the chest, the affidavit says.
The boy then took the phone, according to police.
The affidavit also says several witnesses identified the boy as the shooter.
The Seattle Times generally does not name juvenile suspects unless they’re prosecuted in adult court. Wednesday is the deadline to file charges and, because of the seriousness of the crime, prosecutors will charge him as an adult.
The boy is suspected of killing David L. Peterson, 54, at North 85th Street and First Avenue Northwest after he called 911 just before 9 p.m. Feb. 23, saying he’d been robbed at gunpoint, according to Seattle police. He had been shot once.
Three people were seen running from the area, police said.
Peterson’s widow, Kimberly Dawn Pettigrew Peterson, and his brother were in court on Monday. Greg Peterson said his family intends to see that justice is carried through.
“I think it’s my responsibility to my brother and his family to walk this through,” said Greg Peterson.