An Omaha teenager gunned down in October was killed because of the color of his shirt, police testified at a hearing for five men charged in the death.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - An Omaha teenager gunned down in October was killed because of the color of his shirt, police testified at a hearing for five men charged in the death.
Montrell Wiseman, 16, was shot and killed on Oct. 21 as he and a group of friends entered a house in north Omaha. A 16-year-old girl also was shot and injured.
Police said at the hearing Monday that the five suspects had been seeking revenge for the September shooting death of Anthony Saunsoci, a cousin of one of the men charged. At least some of them are known gang members, police said. They were driving around a rival gang's area looking for anyone wearing red, the rival gang's color, when they spotted Wiseman. Police say Wiseman and his friends were wearing red Nebraska Husker shirts but were not affiliated with a gang.
Wiseman and his friends were chatting outside a house but a purple van cruising the neighborhood made them nervous so they decided to go inside, a homicide detective testified Monday.
"They were feeling uneasy about the way the occupants of the van were looking at them," Officer Chris Gordon said, according to the Omaha World-Herald. "They were trying to go inside."
The five men charged in the shooting - Angelo Tolbert, Joshua Vanackeren, Matthew Saunsoci, Adam Gamble, and Francis Cayou - were ordered Monday to stand trial in Douglas County District Court.
Prosecutors say Tolbert, 20, was the triggerman. He is being held without bail on first-degree murder, first-degree assault and weapons counts. Vanackeren, 23, also is charged with first-degree murder, assault and weapons counts and is being held on $750,000 bail.
The other men are charged with conspiracy to commit a felony and are being held on bail ranging from $250,000 to $2 million.
A sixth person, Nikole Gamble, was also ordered to stand trial on a charge of being an accessory. She is accused of hiding Tolbert from police and is being held on $50,000 bail.
None of the attorneys for those charged immediately returned messages Tuesday seeking comment on their clients' cases.