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News Coverage Regarding
The Homicide and Murder Trials
of William Jenkins
August 12, 1997

All articles are taken in their entirety from the sites credited.
The entire content of the article is the copyright of the original publisher.
Minor editing to fit the format of this website may have been made by
the webpage publisher but in all such editing no changes to the original text
of the reporter has been made.

Please note that the names of the perpetrators have been obliterated
from the articles and their descriptions substituted.  The publishers of this page
will not dignify them by mentioning their names in this website.
It is our opinion that complete anonymity and obscurity
is more suitable and appropriate to their deeds.

From the Associated Press newswire. August 13, 1997

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- Three people have been charged in the slaying of a 16-year-old boy who was shot to death during a holdup at a suburban Richmond fast food restaurant, police said.

William Jenkins had worked at the Bullets restaurant just two days when he was killed Tuesday about 11 p.m., Henrico County police said. Police found his body in the restaurant driveway.

[Male], 23, of Richmond, was charged with capital murder, robbery and use of a firearm, police communications officer Bob Baughn said Wednesday.

[Female A], 18, of Richmond, and a 17-year-old girl were charged with murder, robbery and use of a firearm, Baughn said.

Police spotted the suspects a few blocks from the restaurant

The following articles originally appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch on the dates noted.

Thursday, August 14, 1997

Gunman accosted teen-ager in lot
Bullets Restaurant worker fatally shot

Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
A 16-year-old Henrico County boy shot to death at Bullets Restaurant late Tuesday was accosted in the parking lot by a gunman, who used the teen to get inside the restaurant and rob it about 40 minutes after closing, police said yesterday.

William Benjamin Jenkins, who had moved back to Richmond in May from a two-year stay in Tennessee, was fatally shot about 10:40 p.m. in the east-side doorway of the restaurant at 7712 W. Broad St.

Within minutes, Henrico patrol officers swarmed the area and arrested three suspects as they were leaving the Cardinal Forest Apartment complex behind the restaurant at Shrader and Cardinal roads, police said. One of the three had lived in the complex last year, according to court records.

Police arrested [male], 23, of ... Chesterfield County; [female A], 18, of the same address; and a 17-year-old girl whose name was withheld because of her age but who also listed the [same address].

[23 year old male] was charged with capital murder, robbery and two counts of using a firearm in a felony. [18 year old female] and the 17-year-old were each charged with first-degree murder, robbery and two firearm counts.

Jenkins, who was working his second day at Bullets, was the son of Bill Jenkins, an assistant professor of speech and drama at Virginia Union University and a well-known Richmond theater set designer.

Reached yesterday, Bill Jenkins said his son was excited about landing his first real job in Richmond. He spent his first workday washing dishes.

The teen, who was to have celebrated his 17th birthday next month, planned to attend Hermitage High School this fall as a senior.

''He's one of those good, bright kids,'' the elder Jenkins said. ''Like every teen-ager, he wanted to be a rock star . . . and he had the potential to be a very good artist.''

The robbery and shooting occurred about 10:40 p.m. as assistant manager [W]... was setting the building's alarm. [W], Jenkins and another teen-age boy were the only employees on duty.

A man, armed with a semiautomatic pistol, apparently approached Jenkins in the parking lot as he was leaving for the night.

The man ''tried to force his way back in the (restaurant), using the boy as a ploy,'' said Henrico police Capt. Gary Bise.

What sparked the shooting remains unclear. Jenkins was shot at least once ''above the shoulders'' while standing in the doorway.

Another employee outside the restaurant dialed 911 from a pay phone. After obtaining a partial description of a Nissan Maxima rental car, patrolmen George Minor, Billy Gill and Allen Wilson stopped it as it was attempting to leave Cardinal Forest Apartments, Lt. Jan Stem said.

[23 year old male] had lived briefly in Cardinal Forest last year when he was arrested on a marijuana possession charge.

[23 year old male and female A] were being held without bond in the Henrico and Hanover jails, respectively, pending hearings Sept. 29 in Henrico Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court and Oct. 2 in Henrico General District Court. Bond and court information on the juvenile was unavailable.

[23 year old male] has a petty criminal record in Chesterfield. In the past two years, he has been charged with credit card theft, carrying a concealed weapon, possession of marijuana and with being a habitual traffic offender.

Stem said police plan to compare the Bullets robbery with other unsolved holdups that have occurred in the Richmond area.

Jenkins' death brings Henrico's homicide count this year to 17, equal to last year's total.

With 4 1/2 months left this year, Henrico is three homicides shy of breaking its record.

Friday, August 15, 1997

Fund is named for slain teen

The family of 16-year-old William B. Jenkins, who was killed Tuesday during a robbery at a West Broad Street restaurant, has established a memorial scholarship fund.

The family suggests contributions to the William Jenkins Memorial Scholarship Fund, in care of The Community Foundadtion, 1025 Boulders Parkway, Suite 405, Richmond, Va. 23225.

Foundation president Darcy Oman said the money will be for post-secondary educational scholarships for young people in the Richmond area.

Jenkins was fatally wounded about 10:40 p.m. Tuesday by a gunman who accosted him in the parking lot of the Bullets Restaurant at 7712 W. Broad St. The man used Jenkins to force his way inside and rob the assistant manager about 40 minutes after closing.

A funeral for Jenkins, who was reared in Highland Springs, will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. at the West End Assembly of God. He will be buried at 5 p.m. at Mount Zion Methodist Church in Schuyler.

Saturday, August 16, 1997

Bullets robbery compared to similar one in March

Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
The Bullets restaurant where a 16-year-old employee was shot to death Tuesday was robbed in similar fashion in March and police are investigating whether one of three suspects charged in the recent robbery also was involved in the earlier crime.

Investigators are comparing the March 16 holdup of Bullets at 7712 W. Broad St. with Tuesday's robbery, both of which occurred after the restaurant closed and involved three suspects. The first robbery was reported at 10:30 p.m., the second at about 10:40 p.m.

''The way the (first) robbery was carried out was different, but that doesn't necessarily mean anything,'' said Henrico police Capt. Gary Bise.

A young man and two teen-age girls have been charged in Tuesday's robbery and slaying, which resulted in the fatal shooting of employee William B. Jenkins. Three males were involved in the earlier holdup, although one of them generally matches the description of the man charged in Tuesday's crime, according to police reports.

[Male], 23, who goes by the nickname ''Wild Child,'' is accused of pulling the trigger in Tuesday's holdup and slaying. His two alleged accomplices -- [female A], 18; and a 17-year-old girl whose name has been withheld -- are believed to have waited outside the restaurant during the robbery, police said.

In Tuesday's robbery, a gunman accosted Jenkins in the parking lot while he was waiting for a ride home. The suspect used the boy to get inside through an east side door of the restaurant, which had closed about 40 minutes earlier.

Once inside, the gunman robbed assistant manager [W]... of an undisclosed amount of money, and then shot Jenkins as he was standing near the doorway, police said. Police haven't determined what sparked the gunfire.

Another employee, a teen-age boy, was waiting outside on the west side of the building for his mother to pick him up. When he realized something was amiss, he dialed 911 from a nearby pay phone.

Police arrived in minutes and arrested [male] and the two teen-agers as they were leaving the Cardinal Forest Apartments behind Bullets at Shrader and Cardinal roads.

In the March 16 robbery, police say a gunman entered the restaurant, put a gun in an employee's face and ordered him to the ground. He demanded money and threatened to shoot the employee if he turned around, according to a police narrative of the robbery.

[The three suspects lived at the same address]; the three apparently had recently moved there, police said.

Police said [male], an Army veteran who attended high school in Maryland, recently was released from jail on a conviction of driving on a suspended operator's license. In the last two years, he has been charged with several minor criminal offenses in Chesterfield, including credit card theft, carrying a concealed weapon and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute it.

He recently was charged with being a habitual traffic offender. He has numerous traffic convictions, including several for driving on a suspended operator's license.

According to court records, [male] has lived at several locations in the last two years, including a residence at Cardinal Forest Apartments in the 4700 block of Cardinal Court. He lived there at the time of his drug arrest on Nov. 9, court records show.

Jenkins, the boy shot in Tuesday's holdup, was to be buried today at Mount Zion United Methodist Church in Schuyler. He grew up in the Highland Springs area and attended Highland Springs Elementary School, Fairfield Middle School and his freshman year at Highland Springs High School.

About two years ago, he and his two siblings moved to ..., Tenn., with their mother, Katherine Hedian, who accepted a position there as a certified nurse midwife. The family returned in March after Hedian completed her work there, said Bill Jenkins, William's father.

Jenkins and Hedian are divorced.

The elder Jenkins, an assistant professor of speech and drama at Virginia Union University and a Richmond theater set designer, said he and his son had become ''good friends'' since the boy's return to Richmond.

''He liked working backstage on local theater productions with me -- often,'' Jenkins said.

''I was working on a production of Oliver . . . down at the Empire Theater this summer, and William came to work with me pretty much every day,'' he added. ''And I just treasure the time that he and I spent together.''

The elder Jenkins said his son enjoyed drawing and sketching, playing the guitar and spending time outdoors.

''He had aspirations for playing in a band, writing his own songs,'' the elder Jenkins said. ''He spoke about that a lot. And he had great potential as an artist, as far as I'm concerned.''

Jenkins described his son as a ''popular kid'' who made friends easily.

''He had a lot of friends here and he has a lot of friends in Tennessee who will be coming up for the funeral,'' Jenkins said.

''He was a very supportive individual for his friends,'' he added. ''And they appreciated him for that. He lived a very simple and unpretentious life.''

Tuesday, September 30, 1997

Manager, defendant tell of fatal holdup

Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
Bullets Restaurant manager [W] first thought someone was playing a joke when one of her employees, 16-year-old William B. Jenkins, knocked on a side door after the restaurant had closed and asked to be let inside.

When she opened the door, [she] saw a figure behind Jenkins holding an object near the teen's head.

''I said, 'You got to stop playing around,' '' [she] testified during a preliminary hearing yesterday in Henrico County Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court.

She soon realized it was no joke.

''We're not playing, this is a holdup,'' a voice announced, she testified.

In the instant it took her to scream, Jenkins was fatally shot in the neck and collapsed in the doorway, she said. It was the teen's second day on the job.

The gunman, with a Bullets T-shirt wrapped around his face, rushed inside and forced [her] to open a safe, she testified. He took $1,787 and [her] purse before fleeing to a getaway car parked behind the restaurant, where his two teen-age accomplices, both girls, were waiting, authorities testified yesterday.

Police swarmed the area and arrested [female A], 18, [male]..., 23, and [female B], 17, within minutes.

Police recovered [W's] pocketbook with ''money flowing out of it'' on the floorboard of their rental car, forensics Detective T.M. Tiller testified.

On the strength of yesterday's testimony, Henrico Judge Robert J. Smith certified to a grand jury murder and firearm charges against all three suspects. In addition, he certified robbery and a second firearm charge against [female A].

On Thursday, [male and female A] are scheduled to appear in Henrico General District Court on identical robbery and firearm charges.

The three shared an apartment in ... Chesterfield County, authorities said.

Yesterday, [female A] told how she, [male and female B] plotted to rob the restaurant on Aug. 12.

[Female A], who testified for the prosecution with the hope of receiving leniency, told the court she didn't realize they were going to rob the place until they pulled onto a gravel drive behind the restaurant at 7712 W. Broad St. She said the holdup was [male and female B's] idea.

''I thought we were going to get something to eat,'' [she] testified. But she said she wasn't surprised when they announced their plans to rob the restaurant.

[She] said they had considered robbing a woman they saw on the street earlier that evening, but they aborted the plan after the woman got into her car once they pulled alongside her.

[Female A], who at times was tearful and visibly frightened, told how [male] assigned each of them a task that led to the robbery.

[Female B], she testified, was instructed to count the number of employees inside the restaurant after asking to use the bathroom. When [she] returned, [female A's] job was to get employees to open the door by knocking and asking for a cup of ice water. [Male] was then to rush inside, she said.

But the plan fizzled when employees told [female A] to go to the front take-out window, she said. She returned to the car with the ice water.

[She] said the three of them then sat in the car for 30 minutes to an hour, plotting their next move. During the wait, [She] said [male] asked her to hold a .380-caliber, semiautomatic pistol. [She] said [female B] had obtained the gun from her boyfriend.

[She] testified that about 10:40 p.m., [male] took the gun and walked to the restaurant.

Police said Jenkins was waiting outside for a ride home when [male] accosted him at gunpoint and forced him to the restaurant's side door. [W.], the manager, said she heard a knock and then Jenkins say, ''Open up. It's me.''

After opening the door and hearing someone announce a holdup, [W.] said her screams were quickly followed by a gunshot. She said she reached down to Jenkins after he collapsed in the doorway. He was shot in the left side of the neck and died at the scene.

The gunman then ordered [W.] to open the restaurant's safe, but it took her several tries to do so. She said the gunman emptied four money trays and fled.

[W.] said she never saw the gunman's face, but the yellow T-shirt she said he was wearing matches the shirt police say [male] was wearing the night of the robbery.

[Female A] testified that she heard a gunshot and saw [male] run back to their car with a woman's pocketbook. He shouted for them to drive away, and [female B], who was behind the wheel, sped off, she said.

Another employee on the other side of the building, who was waiting for a ride, dialed 911 on a pay phone after realizing something was amiss. Police officers arrested the suspects within minutes as they were leaving the Cardinal Forest Apartment complex behind the restaurant at Shrader and Cardinal roads.

[Male] once lived in the Cardinal Forest Apartments behind the restaurant, according to authorities and court records.

[Female A], who testified yesterday that she has robbed before, said [male] told her that he and his brother had robbed, or had planned to rob, the same Bullets restaurant before the Aug. 12 holdup. Police are investigating whether [male] was involved in the March 16 holdup of the restaurant, which was robbed in similar fashion by three males.

Jenkins,... was the son of Bill Jenkins, an assistant professor of speech and drama at Virginia Union University and a free-lance set designer for local professional theaters. The teen's mother, Katherine Hedian, is a certified nurse and midwife.

(c) 1997, Richmond Newspapers Inc.

Friday, October 3, 1997

Judge certifies two charges in homicide
A judge yesterday certified robbery and firearm charges against a Chesterfield County man accused of fatally shooting a 16-year-old Bullets Restaurant employee during a holdup Aug. 12.

[Male] ''Wild Child'' ..., 23, waived his preliminary hearing on the charges during a brief appearance in Henrico General District Court.

A hearing for co-defendant [female A], 18, was continued to Oct. 14. She also is expected to waive her hearing, said Henrico Commonwealth's Attorney Toby Vick.

On Monday, a Henrico Juvenile District Court judge certified murder and firearm charges against [male and female A] and a third defendant, [female B], 17, after an hourlong hearing in which [female A] testified for the prosecution.

[She] described how the three planned the robbery, which ended in their arrests a short time later.

Another witness, Bullets Manager [W.], testified that the gunman forced his way inside the restaurant at 7712 W. Broad St. and fatally shot 18-year-old William B. Jenkins. The gunman had accosted Jenkins in the parking lot as Jenkins was waiting for his ride home and had used Jenkins to get inside the closed restaurant, police said.

The three defendants were arrested within minutes of the 10:40 p.m. robbery as they attempted to drive from the scene. Police recovered the gun, [W's] purse and $1,787 taken from the restaurant.

A Henrico Circuit Court grand jury will consider the charges against the trio Nov. 10.

Wednesday, January 14, 1998

Woman, 19, pleads guilty to murder
Restaurant worker shot during robbery

[Female A], 19, pleaded guilty yesterday to murder and robbery for her part in the Aug. 12 robbery of a Bullets restaurant that resulted in the killing of a 16-year-old employee, William B. Jenkins.

Henrico County Circuit Judge Buford M. Parsons Jr. scheduled sentencing for March 26.

Prosecutors say [she] waited in the getaway car driven by co-defendant [Female B], also 19, while the third defendant, [male] "Wild Child"..., 23, committed the robbery and killed Jenkins with a shot to the neck.

[Male] got into the restaurant at 7712 W. Broad St. by using Jenkins, who was waiting for a ride in the parking lot after his second day on the job. [He] forced Jenkins to knock on a locked side door and ask fellow employees to let him in.

Earlier, authorities say, [female A] and [male] went to the door but were not admitted.

[Male] faces a capital murder charge as well as robbery and illegal-use-of-firearms charges.

The two females are charged with first-degree murder, robbery and the accompanying firearms counts.

[Male] and [Female B] have pleaded not guilty and are scheduled for trials — [female B] next week and [male] on Feb. 10. [Female A] is expected to testify in both trials.

Prosecutors have made no plea agreement with [female A], except to say they will make the judge aware of her cooperation.

February 6, 1998

Restaurant robber gets life sentence

     The man accused of shooting to death a 16-year-old restaurant employee last August will go to prison for life. 23-year-old [male] pleaded guilty this morning to killing William Jenkins at the Bullets Restaurant on Broad Street.
     A judge sentenced [him] to life in prison without parole. Two other women were also charged in the crime.
     Their court appearances are set for March.
WWBT Channel 12
Filed: Feb. 5, 1998 8:00pm

Friday, February 6, 1998

3rd suspect in slaying pleads guilty
Plea used to avoid death-penalty threat

Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
[Male], 23, nicknamed "Wild Child," pleaded guilty to capital murder yesterday for his part in a robbery and slaying at a Bullets fast-food restaurant last August in exchange for a prosecutor's promise not to seek the death penalty.

[Male], who had been scheduled for trial next week, was sentenced immediately to life in prison with no possibility of parole, said Henrico County Commonwealth's Attorney Toby Vick.

Two female co-defendants, who had already pleaded guilty separately to first-degree murder and robbery, were expected to testify at [his] trial. They were expected to tell the jury that [he] was the gunman who shot 16-year-old William B. Jenkins in the neck in the course of robbing the restaurant at 7712 W. Broad St.

Jenkins, a restaurant employee who had just finished his second day on the job, was waiting for a ride home outside the restaurant about 10:40 p.m. last Aug. 12. According to the prosecution's case, [23 year old male] approached him with a handgun and forced him to knock on a locked employee's entrance door and ask to come back inside.

When [W.], restaurant manager, opened the door and realized it was a robbery, she screamed. At that instant, the gun [male] was holding went off, wounding Jenkins fatally, according to earlier testimony at a preliminary hearing. [Male], with a Bullets T-shirt over his face, rushed inside and forced [W.] to open a safe.

[He] took nearly $1,800 and [W.'s] purse. He fled to a car parked behind the building. [female B], 19, was behind the wheel. [FemaleA], also 19, was a passenger. The car sped off, but county police swarmed the area and soon captured the trio.

[Female A] pleaded guilty to murder and robbery Jan. 13 and is scheduled for sentencing March 26. [Female B] pleaded guilty to the same charges Jan. 22 and will be sentenced March 23. Both face up to life in prison.

Authorities say the three spent more than 30 minutes in the car in the restaurant parking lot before [male] approached Jenkins. The three were trying to find out how many employees were inside and how to gain entrance through the locked door, officials have said.
1998, Richmond Newspapers Inc.

Tuesday, March 24, 1998

Two teen-agers sentenced in Bullets robbery, slaying

Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
Two teen-age girls were sentenced to moderate prison terms yesterday for their roles in the robbery of a Bullets Restaurant last summer in which a 16-year-old employee was fatally shot.

[Female B], who was 17 when the robbery occurred on Aug. 12, 1997, was sentenced in Henrico Circuit Court to serve 18 years in prison on convictions of robbery, murder and felony firearm offenses.

A co-defendant, [female A], who was 18 at the time, was sentenced to serve 14 years for the same offenses.

A third defendant, [male], 23, was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole after pleading guilty last month to capital murder and robbery charges. [He] fired the shot that killed employee William B. Jenkins after he used Jenkins to get inside the restaurant and rob it of more than $1,700.

Jenkins, finishing his second day on the job, was accosted as he waited outside for a ride home after the restaurant had closed.

[Female A and female B] pleaded guilty in January. Both suggested yesterday that neither believed [male] would actually carry out the robbery or shoot anyone.

"[He] had talked about doing these things all the time but never did it," argued [R.], [female B's] attorney.

Henrico Commonwealth's Attorney Toby Vick said he had "no doubt" that [female A and female B] didn't know [male] intended to kill someone. But Vick said he also had no doubt that the women knew he had a gun, was capable of violence and intended to rob the restaurant.

[Male], nicknamed Wild Child, had developed a reputation for violence. Vick said [male] "spoke constantly of committing robberies" and on one occasion fired on a Chesterfield County police cruiser.

Although [female A and female B] played lesser roles in the robbery, authori-ties said both helped [male] "case" the restaurant.

[Female B], according to testimony, was instructed to count the number of employees inside the restaurant after asking to use the bathroom. [Female A's] job was to get employees to open the door by knocking and asking for a cup of ice water. But the plan fizzled when employees told [her] to go to the front take-out window.

In addition, [female B] drove the getaway vehicle after the robbery and made her boyfriend's .380-caliber pistol available to [male] to commit the crime.

[R.] yesterday described [female B] as an emotionally unstable young woman whose father abandoned her early in life, and whose mother was sent to prison for cocaine possession when [she] was 16. She became a ward of the state and was sexually abused while living with a foster family for about seven months.

The Chesterfield Social Services Department then placed her in an Independent Living program, where she was given an apartment and an allowance for living expenses. She became acquainted with [female A and male], and she allowed them to move in without the permission or knowledge of social service workers.

Lawyer [J.] said [female A's] parents divorced when she was 8 and her father gained custody; [her] mother had little to do with her. [She] dropped out of school at 16 and began working for her father, a barber, [J.] said.

Bill Jenkins, the victim's father, described the punishment the teens received as a "hollow victory."

"We need to make an effort to let kids [like [female A and female B]] know there is hope and that someone cares about them," Jenkins said. "We have to give them a much stronger message of hope."

1998, Richmond Newspapers Inc.

- There will be no more court appearances related to William's death. By pleading guilty, the defendants waived their right to appeal. Virginia is a no-parole state. As a result, the defendants will serve all of their sentences. We hope and pray that they will find some measure of faith, understanding, and purpose while they are behind bars. I will pray for them every day, and I hope that one day, they may be able to pray for me.

Thank you,

Bill Jenkins

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