16-year-old charged with murder following botched robbery makes initial hearing in adult court

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A 16-year-old is being tried as an adult following a robbery that turned deadly in November

During an initial court hearing, 16-year-old Dejuan Taylor entered a not guilty plea on a murder charge.

According to court records, the 16-year-old suspect took part in a robbery and shooting last month at the Wildwood Village apartment complex on Indy's near northwest side. During that crime, 16-year-old Elijah Taylor died after being shot in the back.

Prosecutors say the murder took place over a PlayStation 4 valued at just 200 dollars.

“It’s just devastating,” said Elijah’s mother Jessica Taylor. “I can’t believe that they killed my child.”

Prosecutors say Dejuan and Elijah, who share a last name but are not related, both planned to meet someone to buy a PlayStation 4 using OfferUp.

Court records claim during that meeting Dejuan and Elijah tried to rob the seller and multiple people fired shots.

For her part, Elijah's mother doesn’t believe her son knew the online deal would turn into a robbery.

“I don’t see how he can rob somebody without a gun.  Everyone was armed except for my child,” said Jessica.  “They used him as bait so they could rob this person and they killed him in this whole situation.”

Prosecutors did not clarify who fired the fatal shots, but Dejuan Taylor is charged with felony murder, which simply means he allegedly participated in the crime which resulted in death.

Court records also claim Dejuan had been involved in multiple similar robberies, before the deadly incident.

“It’s sad. I am saddened that this is also a child that killed my son,” said Jessica.  “I hope that the killer really thinks about what he has done.”

Dejuan Taylor is being held without bond.  His family left court without comment.

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