What a terrible waste

Published 8:11 am Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Thursday night’s murder in Southampton County was shocking news.

Probably just as disturbing and shocking were the ages of the three suspects accused of killing Darrin Lee in Southampton Meadows mobile home park. Two are 18; in their mug shots, one looks like he could pass for 14 or 15. The third is 20.

What is it about these young people, carrying and shooting guns and being involved with crimes like murder?

In the case from Thursday, Darrin L. Robinson, 20; Bruce L. Boone, 18; and Dayquan Eley, 18, all of Suffolk, were accused of first-degree murder, which means it was pre-mediated. First-degree murder in Virginia calls for the possibility of life in prison or death.

The three are accused of gunning down Lee, 28, shortly after 11:30 p.m. outside his home. Inside were his brother, sister and mother. Neighbors say four to five shots were fired.

Two months ago, an 18-year-old from Suffolk was shot to death. TyQuan Lewis was a popular, multisport athlete at Lakeland High School.

Students and fellow teachers described Lewis as a well-liked respectful student, loyal friend and excellent athlete. He spent countless hours in the training room recovering from a football injury and worked hard to catch up in his schoolwork after he missed school.

Accused in his death were Randy Sherrod Copeland Jr. and Dontaz Latray Wilkerson, both 19.

According to Suffolk police, Lewis and Wilkerson were attending a party at Bethlehem Ruritan Club when a fight broke out. Both were believed to have been involved in the fight.

Lewis and Wilkerson left the party and met up elsewhere, where they again argued. Police say Copeland provided Wilkerson with the gun that Wilkerson allegedly used to shoot Lewis.

We can understand people having differences, but do people not realize how fragile life is? In a matter of seconds, life can change for a suspect and victim.

The family of Darrin Lee lost a son, brother and uncle. The alleged shooters also lost. They could easily spend the rest of their lives behind bars. What a waste for everyone involved.