Teen charged in brutal attack near university - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Jason Miles

Teen charged in brutal attack near university

Memphis police have arrested three suspects in a brutal attack near the University of Memphis. James Earl Hamilton, 16, is the first to be charged with aggravated rape, robbery and kidnapping.
    
"He's been on probation before," said Barry Mitchell with Shelby County Juvenile Court. "We tried to work with him and his family. We've done everything we could."
    
Mitchell says Hamilton has a criminal record that dates back to his early teens. "Possession of marijuana, curfew...he had a reckless endangerment with a weapon charge."
     
Mitchell described these latest charges as "very serious". 
    
Police say Hamilton and two adult men ambushed a couple inside the garage of The Stratum apartments on Highland on Monday morning. The woman was sexually assaulted before the man was shot and robbed, authorities said.
    
"It is sad," said Pastor Mark Matheny of St. Luke's United Methodist, whose church sits across the street from the new Stratum Apartments."I think when people see development and good things come along, there are folks who want to take advantage of that."
    
He says it's further proof that a great deal of work lies ahead when it comes to crime prevention. "That's one of the reasons we're working with after-school programs to try and do prevention from that end of it." 
    
The pastor says he's praying for the victims and for the teenager charged in their attack.   
    
Hamilton could be transferred to criminal court. Memphis Police plan to charge his adult accomplices very soon. 

The man who was shot remains hospitalized in critical condition.


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