Authorities charged a second youngster on Friday with murder concerning the shooting deaths of two kids at an educational program in Des Moines. Des Moines resident Bravon Michael Tukes, 19, is charged with two charges of first-degree murder, one act of attempted murder, and one count of involvement in a criminal organization. The accusations are consistent with those made against Preston Walls, 18, earlier this week.
Walls is suspected of shooting two teenage students at the Starts Right Here education program on Monday, killing one of them, and injuring the organization’s creator. According to the police, there is proof that Tukes talked to Walls both before and right after the incident and that he also operated the car Walls reportedly escaped in.
According to a news release from the police, Tukes and Walls are both members of the same gang and carried out the shootings “in connection with that gang membership.” Police reportedly found four guns during their inquiry. There was no indication in online court records that Tukes had a lawyer who could speak for him.
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Gionni Dameron, 18, and Rashad Carr, 16, were shot and killed. Former Chicago gang member Will Keeps, who later relocated to Des Moines and established the program to aid at-risk youngsters, was gravely hurt and is still being treated there. According to the police, all four of the teenagers were gang members. However, Dameron and Carr’s family and friends contradict this, saying the two were close friends who were devoted to their families and were not members of gangs.
Police claim that under supervision following a firearms arrest last year, Walls ripped off an ankle monitor 16 minutes before the shooting, which was premeditated. According to court records, he entered a communal area of Starts Right Here and started shooting while carrying a hidden semiautomatic handgun with a high-capacity extended magazine.
This week, there were no classes at the education program, which assists students who have struggled in traditional schools and collaborates with Des Moines Public Schools. Keeps has developed strong relationships with local authorities, and the city’s police chief chairs the program’s board. The interim superintendent of schools, Matt Smith, called Keeps “Amazing.