A man already in jail for an unrelated crime faces a first-degree murder charge for allegedly killing a teen in order to gain gang acceptance, Phoenix police said.
Terrell Denton, 20, was already in custody on unrelated aggravated assault charges.
Dewight Westbrook was walking with friends in the area of 6800 South 51st Avenue on July 9. They were headed to McDonalds at the intersection of 51st Avenue and West Baseline Road, officers said.
Denton, who was armed with a handgun, approached Westbrook from behind near a vacant field and began firing. Westbrook was shot several times.
Homicide investigators working on the case were eventually able to identify Denton as the shooter, Phoenix police spokesman Sgt. Steve Martos said.
Martos said Denton allegedly wanted to demonstrate his willingness to commit crime in order to become a gang member. Investigators believe Terrell killed Dewight because he lived in another neighborhood, Martos said.
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