BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A 14-year-old boy is charged as an adult in the horrific murder of a teen girl raped, burned and killed in her home. Disturbing new details about how Arnesha Bowers died and how she was targeted.
Christie Ileto with the major developments in this investigation.
Police say it was the confession of the two men already charged with Bowers’ death that led them to the 14-year-old believed to be the main link to the victim.
Police believe it was a gang initiation that killed Arnesha Bowers inside her now charred home. Raeshawn Rivers, 14, is who police say helped Adonay Dixon and John Childs murder Bowers.
“This was supposed to be done in order for one of these guys to get in and another guy to move higher up within the gang,” said Major Stanley Brandford, Baltimore City Police Department.
Police say the gang is the Tree Top Piru–a subset of the West Coast Bloods–but one that gang expert Tyrone Powers says started in a Hagerstown prison.
“What you try to do is give someone a horrific task to complete against an innocent. The reason you choose an innocent is you want to show you can be callous and do this to anyone,” said Powers.
New court documents reveal after Bowers was sexually assaulted, her genitals were burned in an effort to destroy proof the three men were there.
Rivers admits to police he called Bowers multiple times before she died and afterwards sent a text from her cell to her friend to throw off police.
Ileto: “Gangs have a code, and aren’t children off limits?”
Powers: “We’re seeing an evolution of gangs–still violent, but less organized. But now the code does not exclude the young.”
It’s Rivers’ age and the details of his involvement that have residents in Bowers’ neighborhood even more horrified than they were before.
“It’s just more proof that no one’s off limits, no neighborhood is off limits to the crime, especially when it’s concerning gangs,” said April Bryant-Hyman, neighbor.
Now 14-year-old Rivers, who would have been finishing the ninth grade, is being charged as an adult for murder.
Rivers is facing 22 other criminal counts.
Police say a fourth arrest could be coming soon.