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Officers investigating 13-year-old’s murder obstructed by uncooperative witnesses

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The recent murder of a young teenager outside of Castleton Square Mall was shocking, not only for the age of the child but the refusal of witnesses to cooperate with investigators.

Matthew McGee, 13, a student at Belzer Middle School in Lawrence Township, was shot in the head in the parking lot of a fast food restaurant on East 82nd Street in front of the mall Saturday night.

While IMPD homicide detectives have recovered shell casings from the scene and surveillance video from the restaurant, they are making little headway in eliciting accounts of the shooting from seven witnesses, between the ages of 13 and 16, who were on the scene that night.

“There are some parents and witnesses who were not cooperative,” said IMPD Deputy Chief of Investigations Chris Bailey. “It’s frustrating for our detectives, and it should be frustrating for the victims’ families, that there are people out there who have information that may lead us to the person or persons that are responsible for the murder of this 13-year-old young man.

“It’s frustrating for our people but it’s not unusual.”

IMPD’s frustrations were confirmed as FOX59, while seeking out witnesses to McGee’s killing, was repeatedly told that the teenagers didn’t see anything, were locked inside the restaurant or, in one case, weren’t even at the murder scene Saturday night.

“We’re not done trying to approach these witnesses and their families trying to give us information,” said Bailey. “We don’t want to perpetuate this cycle of non-cooperation because in the long run it hurts the victim’s family and it doesn’t provide justice for the victims and that’s unfortunate.”

Bailey said detectives will search social media accounts to gather information in the killing.

“We know that there were no reported incidents of fights or disturbances either at the movie theater or at the mall that night,” said Bailey. “If you knew this young man, if your kids went to school with this young man, and if you see something on your kid’s Facebook page that might lead you in a direction for this case, bring that to our attention.”

Three teenagers, two of them 18-year-old men, were murdered in Indianapolis this past weekend.

Since January 1, seven children under the age of 17 have died of gunfire homicides.

Bailey said an IMPD lieutenant and a top civilian aide will be visiting the homes of the reluctant witnesses and their parents to encourage cooperation in the McGee investigation.

If you or your child know anything about the murder of Matthew McGee at the Long John Silver’s restaurant in Castleton, and wish to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at (317) 262-TIPS.