VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) – A teenager charged in the shooting death of another at a Hazel Dell strip mall appeared in court Wednesday.
Terrance Busby, 17, of Vancouver, is charged with first-degree murder. Two suspected passengers in Busby’s car, including the shooter, have not yet been caught.
According to prosecutors, Busby drove the getaway car, a black Mercedes, in what was described as a “planned, coordinated robbery gone wrong” that ended with 18-year-old Gage Kiser shot to death.
Busby, a high schooler being prosecuted as an adult, was originally charged with second-degree murder, but the upgraded charge was requested by prosecutors and accepted by a judge following the filing of an amended affidavit of probable cause.
According to the affidavit, Kiser was with his brother and two others on Monday when the foursome went to the strip mall to sell marijuana to someone Kiser talked to on social media.
Kiser’s brother told investigators that when Kiser got out to talk with the buyer, the buyer looked at the marijuana and tried to run off with it – and when Kiser tried to stop them, he was shot, the affidavit said.
Another woman who had been parked nearby also told deputies she witnessed a passenger in the Mercedes walk up to Kiser’s Jeep with a gun, which she described as a revolver, before hearing gunshots and screams, the document said. The woman said she then watched the Mercedes quickly take off.
One of Kiser’s passengers told investigators he recognized the driver of the Mercedes as someone named “Terrance,” later determined by a detective to be Terrance Busby. The affidavit said after the shooting, a detective monitoring Busby’s family home saw him pull up in a Mercedes. The detective said the license plates appeared to have been switched.
The detective said Busby was then picked up and went to his cousin’s apartment. A search warrant was obtained for the unit and Busby was later arrested.
Investigators said family members at the apartment told them Busby had a history of drug robberies and just days ago posted a photo on his Snapchat story showing a black revolver.
At his first court appearance, Busby’s court-appointed attorney objected to the case being handled in adult court. The defense attorney also argued that Busby acted as more of an “accomplice” in the alleged murder.
Busby is being held on $500,000 bail and is due back in court next Friday.
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