ORLANDO, Fla. – The mother of an Orlando teen arrested for his involvement in an iPhone X robbery that ended with a 16-year-old boy shot dead in January wants her son's charges dropped.
Kizzy McGee claims her son, 18-year-old Deandre Florence, is innocent. She said despite police reports, her son is not affiliated with a gang, nor was he involved in the Jan. 2 robbery and shooting.
After her son's hearing Monday, McGee told News 6 that her son wasn't perfect, but he was on the right track. She said he was attending Jones High School when he was arrested in March, two months after the deadly shooting.
Orlando Police arrested Florence in March and linked him to the case in Parramore.
Police say 16-year-old Denim Williams and Florence made plans to rob 41-year-old Curtis Fulcher on Jan. 2 when they met him to buy his cellphone.
Fulcher said he opened fire to protect his wife and unborn child, who were also on scene, and because he believed Williams was reaching for a gun during the attempted robbery. Williams died as a result of the shooting.
The investigation revealed that neither Williams nor Florence had a gun.
"Didn’t have nothing to do with it. No gun. Didn’t hurt nobody, no nothing. He was just there," McGee said. "Y’all gave him a whole charge that has nothing to do with him. He didn’t murder, kill, slanging, he didn’t do any of that. Why isn’t it attempted robbery, why isn’t it a charge like that?"
Florence’s mentor, Miles Mulrain, said he had big dreams. He said he wanted to be in the military.
"This boy does not need to be sitting in jail looking at his whole life be thrown away because he was at a scene," Mulrain said.
His dreams cut short for now because he’s sitting in jail on a second-degree murder charge.
"I want to see all the charges dismissed on my son and let him out," McGee said.
Fulcher has since posted bond and is being charged with manslaughter with a weapon. He told News 6 Monday that he doesn't believe Florence should face life in prison, but should be held responsible in some way for his involvement in the crime.
Florence is now sitting behind bars. He pleaded not guilty. Court records show Florence was out of bond for a grand theft charge in January when he was arrested for this crime in March.