14-year-old boy charged in Charleston murder transferred to adult status, tentative plea deal with prosecutors

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — One of two 14-year-old boys charged in connection with the Jan. 30 murder of a tobacco store clerk in North Charleston will be tried as an adult as part of a tentative plea deal with prosecutors.

Bre’jaun Williams-Hampton (WCHS-TV)

The case of Bre’jaun Williams-Hampton of Charleston was transferred to adult status in an order entered by Kanawha County Circuit Judge Maryclaire Akers follow a Tuesday hearing. It’s the first time his name has been released.

Williams-Hampton agreed that his case be transferred to adult status, was arraigned and waived his preliminary hearing. The case is expected to be taken up by a Kanawha County grand jury next month. A plea, connected to the robbery and murder charge, would come at some point after an indictment.

The terms of the tentative plea haven’t been released.

A note left on the door of the Tobacco & Pipe shop for victim Caden Martin. (Photo/WCHS-TV)

Charleston police allege Williams-Hampton and another 14-year-old boy, charged and in juvenile custody, went on a crime spree in late January that included the murder of Caden Martin, 19, of Dunbar.

Martin, who worked at Tobacco and Pipe on 7th Avenue, was gunned down during an armed robbery on Jan. 30. Charleston police charged Williams-Hampton a few hours after the shooting while charges against the other defendant came in late-February.

Court documents filed after Tuesday’s hearing said surveillance video shows Martin appears to have been complying with Williams-Hampton’s robbery demands. The video shows him putting vaping products into a backpack. A few moments later, the video shows Martin being shot twice.

Charleston police noticed the second juvenile acting as an apparent look-out outside the store. The two boys ran after the shooting, the court documents said.

Williams-Hampton was found later that evening at a residence on Hunt Avenue. Court documents said a relative of Martin, the murder victim, had confronted him there and police were called.

Police also charged Williams-Hampton and the other teenager with malicious wounding after the Jan. 21 shooting of Christina White on Woodward Drive. White, 44, was shot in the face as she was walking with her boyfriend.

The juveniles also face charges in a third violent crime. Charleston police charged them with first degree robbery in the armed holdup of a driver who was in a parking lot in the 300 block of Patrick Street on Jan. 24. Police said the boys robbed the man at gunpoint as he got out of his vehicle.

Williams-Hampton remains in custody in a state juvenile detention facility.

State law prohibits a 14-year-old to be sentenced to life in prison without parole if convicted of murder. The law does allow for life with mercy, meaning the defendant has a chance for parole after 15 years.





More News

News
Fit + Active Schools Face-off returns to State Culture Center
It was the third year West Virginia Department of Education held the competitive event between nine elementary and middle schools.
May 17, 2024 - 4:51 pm
News
Yeager Airport, American Water team up to bring water bottle refilling stations to the airport terminal
The filling stations are expected to boost sustainability efforts at CRW.
May 17, 2024 - 4:36 pm
News
Kanawha County Commission meets Monday to begin filling Carper's vacant seat
Former longtime Commissioner Kent Carper resigned last week following health problems and an investigation into alleged misconduct.
May 17, 2024 - 4:33 pm
News
Judge dismisses lawsuit over changes made to Beckley's form of government
Businessman Doug Epling filed the lawsuit earlier this year because he believes the change violates state law.
May 17, 2024 - 3:40 pm