Charleston Mayor Riley calls 17-year-olds killer outrageously lawless hoodlum
Charleston Mayor Joe Riley called the person who shot a 17-year-old last weekend in West Ashley an “outrageously lawless hoodlum who will harm someone again.”
Riley and police officials spoke during a news conference this afternoon in which they addressed the Saturday morning slaying of Marley Lion, who was shot five times at close range outside Famous Joe’s Bar and Grill at 1662 Savannah Highway.
Lion was a recent graduate of Academic Magnet High School in North Charleston, where he played sports, strummed on his guitar and was known as a vibrant student. He planned to study Mandarin Chinese and international trade at Clemson University.
Lion’s death was captured on surveillance cameras pointed toward the parking lot, where Lion was sleeping in his Nissan sport utility vehicle because he was too drunk to drive home.
That video was played during the news conference.
It showed one man walk through the parking lot before the shooting. The police said that they would like to speak with the man, but that he is not a suspect.
Minutes later, around 4 a.m., a different man walks up to the vehicle and opens the door. Gunfire ensues.
Despite earlier reports based on Lion’s last words, the police think only one man, who was thought to be in his late teens to late 20s, was involved in the shooting.
In the hour before he died, Lion told officers that someone had walked up to his SUV, apparently to break in or rob him. His car alarm sounded, the police said, and at some point, a man started shooting.
Lion was hit five times, he told officers, and he later died at Medical University Hospital.
Riley and Police Chief Greg Mullen pleaded with anyone who might have information to come forward. Even rumors could help detectives trying to find Lion’s killer, they said.
The statements effectively responded to Lion’s loved ones, who have called on city officials to address what they call an upswing in senseless violence. Relatives and friends also have been raising money to augment a Crime Stoppers reward of $1,000 for anyone with information leading to Lion’s killers, and a fund benefiting Lion’s family had raised $6,000 by 2 p.m. today. Its goal is $10,000.
Also during the news conference, officials confirmed that a 29-year-old man was arrested this morning in connection with a shooting death last week in downtown Charleston.
Joshua Silas Robinson was taken into custody around 9:20 a.m. at Amherst and America streets.
He faces a murder charge in the death of 23-year-old Maliek Byers, who was shot in the back three times early Thursday on Hanover Street in the downtown.
It isn’t the first time Robinson has faced the charge.
He was arrested in connection with the June 2008 shooting death of 36-year-old Earl Rogers, but that charge was dropped in late 2010, according to court records.
Since 2000, Robinson also has convictions for burglary, grand larceny and violating parole. He was convicted of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature after he fired a gun into a building in July 2001.
Reach Andrew Knapp at 937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.