Society

Alaska Teen Shoots Neighbor in Head After Hearing Him Argue with His Girlfriend

| by Allison Geller

The bail for an Anchorage, Alaska teenager who was charged with first-degree assault for shooting his neighbor in the head has been upped from $20,000 to $30,000, to be paid in cash, as he awaits trial. The exact motive for the shooting remains unclear.

Talon Draper, 19, heard his neighbor Jermaine Twiley, 22, having a loud argument with his girlfriend outside an apartment early in the morning Tuesday, according to court document. The Anchorage Daily News reports that Draper, who was up into the night playing video games, told police that the fight had woken up his mother and brother, and one of them called 911.

Officers arrived at the scene and spoke to Twiley and his girlfriend, but when the girlfriend would not supply any more information, they left.

Then, an hour later, the peace was again broken as the couple resumed their argument. The woman screamed for someone to call 911.

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Draper called the police—and loaded his .22-caliber rifle, which he kept in his bedroom closet. Going to the door of his family’s third-floor apartment, he saw Twiley running down the street.

"He yelled for Twiley to stop and fired his gun twice, striking Twiley in the back of the head," the charges say.

Draper asked someone to call 911, telling his mother that "he screwed up.”

Twiley, who was unarmed, was rushed to the hospital where he underwent a surgery involving the removal of part of his skull. He remains on life support.

Anchorage Police Department spokesperson Jennifer Castro said Draper believed he was hearing a “serious physical altercation,” rushing to stop the man “because he feared for the safety of those involved in the domestic altercation,” the Alaska Dispatch reports.

It is not known whether Twiley and Draper knew each other.

Draper has two alcohol charges on his record— a DUI at the age of 14, and a charge of consuming alcohol as a minor six months later, at 15.

Draper, who says he lives off of disability, was assigned a public defender. He made no statement at his hearing besides asking about his “right to a speedy trial.”

"You will have your right to a speedy trial," replied Judge Gregory Motyka.

Sources: Anchorage Daily News, Alaska Dispatch