A .45-caliber handgun was used to kill 25-year-old Luis A. Perez last Wednesday afternoon at South Lime and Juniata streets in Lancaster. But where is it?
Fourteen-year-old Rahmir Isaiah Hopkins stands accused of criminal homicide, having turned himself in a day later. But is he the only suspect?
Two other males were with Hopkins during the streetside confrontation with Perez. Why haven’t they been identified?
Lots of questions remain as Hopkins, of the 1100 block of St. Joseph Street, faces a preliminary hearing Friday on a charge that he shot and killed Perez. Hopkins, three weeks shy of his 15th birthday, was charged as an adult.
More details may emerge Friday as District Judge Jodie Richardson is scheduled to conduct the 1:30 p.m. hearing to decide whether there’s sufficient evidence for Hopkins to stand trial. Hopkins was being held at Lancaster County Prison.
The Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office said Tuesday that city detectives have made great progress in the investigation.
“A lot has been learned, but not everything can be shared with the public at this point,” said Brett Hambright, spokesman for the district attorney’s office.
Here’s a rundown of facts made public so far and some of the questions still unanswered.
What about the gun?
As of Tuesday afternoon, police had not recovered it. Lt. Bill Hickey, the public information officer for the city police, said its location is being sought.
Are there other suspects?
Two males who, along with Hopkins confronted Perez, are being treated as “persons of interest at this point,” Hickey said.
“We’re ascertaining what, if any, role they had in the actual shooting,” he said.
Both of the males wore black, and one had glasses.
Are their names known?
“We have an idea,” Hickey said, “and we’re working on firming that up.”
Were there other witnesses?
Yes, at least two.
One told police he saw the two men dressed in black “actively engaged in a physical altercation with Perez and could not have fired the shot” into the victim’s torso.
Another witness told police he saw a male, wearing a gray sweatshirt, shoot the victim. He later made a photo identification of Hopkins as the shooter.
Police have not released the identities of the witnesses.
Is there other evidence?
Yes, police have video footage, although the actual shooting may not have been recorded.
One camera recorded three males, including Hopkins, arguing with Perez in the 600 block of South Lime Street, police said.
Police also have footage showing the three after the shooting.