OKLAHOMA CITY – A 16-year-old boy accused of shooting and wounding eight people after an Oklahoma City Thunder playoff game fired into a group of unarmed teenage girls after they confronted him about a stolen cell phone, two of the girls testified.
The two 14-year-old girls testified Friday at a hearing to determine whether the teen should stand trial on eight counts of shooting with intent to kill, The Oklahoman reported.
The girls said their group confronted the teen and two others because they had jumped the cousin of one of the girls taken her phone earlier that evening.
One of the girls testified that the teen told her group to "back up" before pulling up his shirt.
"He pulled out his gun and shot," she said, noting that he was less than a foot away when he opened fire.
She testified that no one in her group was armed, and her aunt and a cousin just wanted the phone returned.
Both girls identified the teen as the shooter, although one of the girls, who was shot in the hand, said she didn't know the shooter's identity until she saw his photo in news reports.
The preliminary hearing is scheduled to resume Aug. 23.
Oklahoma County Public defender Ben Brown, who is helping defend the teen, characterized the girls as more culpable than prosecutors are portraying them to be.
"I don't think they are quite so nice," Brown said after Friday's hearing. "I think they're girls who look for fights."
Norman Richards II, who was critically injured, testified that he and a friend were walking to their car when they heard a girl scream, followed by gunshots.
"I took off running and got shot in the back," Richards said. "I fell forward and rolled over on my back."
Richards said he got up with the help of his friend, then "took a few steps forward and fell down."
He said the next thing he remembered was waking up a week later with family standing by his hospital bed.