INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.-- Multiple sources indicate to FOX59 that the mother of a juvenile male facilitated his surrender to Indianapolis homicide detectives for his alleged involvement in the murders of two teenagers at their northeast side apartment last Friday.
Ashlynn Nelson, 15, and Nicholas Nelson, 16, were found shot to death in the 4100 block of Windhill Drive just before 7:30 a.m.
Responding officers pursued a suspect running from the Postbrook Apartments toward a nearby townhouse community in the vicinity of East 42nd Street and North Post Road.
Officers lost track of the suspect but detectives soon released video surveillance photographs of the male they were chasing.
In the press release announcing the arrest, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) wrote, “The residents in this area have played a significant role in their commitment to this family and the community.”
Sunday evening, during a memorial service outside her home, Antonia Bailey also thanked the neighbors, strangers and friends who supported her.
“My children were stolen from me, they were stolen from the world, and they were amazing,” she said. “And to the individual who did it, please turn yourself in, please do not harm him. I don’t want any more violence, I don’t want any more bloodshed, and I’m mad as hell, I’m mad, but I forgive him.”
Sources indicate the surrender of the 15-year-old suspect had been in the works since Saturday morning and detectives are investigating what motive would have brought the youth to the home of the victims so early the day of the killings.
“Very sweet kids, very sweet. Very shy,” said neighbor Diane Bell. “The young girl, she would go out here and dance in front of the house sometimes.
“I’m relieved and I’m glad that the mother who lost her children got justice for her babies.”
Neighbor Billee Leath considered the pain the suspect’s mother must have gone through in deciding to convince her son to turn himself in.
“A lot of courage and a lot of heartbreak to do that to your own child and it tears you up inside but you realize you’re doing what’s best for them,” she said. “I have a son who’s 20 years old now and thankfully he’s outgrown his anger and his rebellious tendencies and I’ve actually had to call the police on him myself so it is a very difficult situation and my heart does go out to his mother.”
So far in 2019, 20 teens under the age of 20-years-old have been killed by gun violence in Marion County. Another six teens have been arrested in gun related homicides. Community leaders, such as Brandon Warren with the youth gun violence prevention group weLIVE, are calling for gun violence education in the school curriculum. Warren said his organization is working behind the scenes to try and make it happen.
“Why isn’t there mandatory counseling sessions? Why isn’t there certain after school programs where these traumatic experiences are discussed," Warren said.
The Marion County Prosecutor will now determine if the youth should be formally charged with murder and whether he will stand trial as an adult.