Juvenile suspect in custody in shooting death of Guntersville te - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL


Juvenile suspect in custody in shooting death of Guntersville teen

Jason Richards (Source: Personal Facebook page) Jason Richards (Source: Personal Facebook page)

The juvenile suspect associated with the shooting death of 15-year-old Jason Richards is now in custody.

Officials said he surrendered himself to the detectives late Wednesday afternoon and is now being detained at the Coosa Valley Detention Center.  He will remain in custody until a hearing to determine if he will be charged as an adult. 

Ryan Anthony Fitch,18, was also arrested earlier this week for his involvement in Richards' death.  According to police, Fitch has been charged with criminally negligent homicide, abuse of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence.

Fifteen-year-old Jason Richards' body was found in May in the Langston community. Authorities positively identified his body on May 21. The forensics lab determined that cause of death was a single gunshot wound. 

Police say after Richards suffered the gunshot wound at a home on Miller Street, Fitch and the juvenile panicked. Instead of calling 911 they took Richards' body to Lois Lane in the Langston community and dumped it.

Police say the charges against Fitch and his accomplice stem from the actions taken after the shooting and not the shooting itself. 

Richards had been missing since Feb. 8 when he was last seen in the parking lot of a Zaxby's in Guntersville. Governor Bentley's office offered a $5,000 reward in April to anyone who had information that could lead to an arrest in the case.

Richards' family expressed their need for closure when his death remained a mystery more than a month after he was found. Tuesday, they said the ordeal had been extremely taxing on all involved.

"We're glad that my son is seeing some justice for what went on," said the victim's father, Chris Richards. "We feel bad for the families of these guys, but, you know, it's been bad for everybody."

This is a breaking update. Check back on WAFF.com for more details.

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