2 Teens Charged in Slaying of Philadelphia Teenager

Two 17-year-olds have been arrested in the killing of 16-year-old Saleem West who was riding his bike. Police say it was part of a feud between groups of teens.

saleem-west-400x400Two teenagers have been arrested in the shooting death of a 16-year-old in Strawberry Mansion on Sunday afternoon.

At a press conference today, police announced a pair of 17-year-olds had been arrested in the slaying of 16-year-old Saleem West, a junior at Delaware Valley Charter High School. Raheem Feaster and Tyreen Johnson are in custody and have been charged as adults.

“We can’t continue to have teenagers shooting other teenagers,” said Lt. Norman Davenport of the homicide unit, at the press conference Friday afternoon. West was killed, Davenport said, as part of an ongoing dispute in the neighborhood between two groups of teenagers. The police said they do not know the origin of that dispute.

“We’re working very hard to determine what is the source of that friction,” Davenport said. “It is very concerning to have a teenager that is with his teenage companion to be killed by two additional teenagers.”

Police described the crime as a set-up. West and a 15-year-old friend were riding their bicycles down the 2200 block of West Sedgely Avenue when a car passed them. When the two teens reached the car on their bicycles, they were shot at by the car’s occupants in an ambush.

The friend, who was not injured and said he hadn’t see the shooters before that day, described the car as a silver Buick with four occupants. Cops say they have the two shooters in the killing, but are looking for more suspects who were in the car with them. Seventeen shots were fired, with one hitting West in the back.

One of the alleged gunmen, Feaster, was arrested November 3rd in a shooting that may be unrelated to the November 1st incident. Police have no motive for that shooting currently. CBS 3 reports this murder may be connected to three or four other murders, and numerous shootings, in the area.

Saleem West was just 16, and an avid basketball fan.

“Saleem touched a whole lot of people,” his mother told reporters after the presser. “He was a good boy, he didn’t deserve to be killed. He was killed for nothing. I’m glad they caught his killers. I’m glad my son is at peace. My son is in paradise. He’s off the streets.”

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