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Dorchester dragging victim dies; suspects now face murder charges

The teen police say was dragged for a half mile on Gallivan Boulevard last week died Wednesday morning, after four days on life support, State Police and the Suffolk County District Attorney's office report.

Authorities say that by the end of Wednesday, the DA's office had filed murder charges against the two people accused of dragging Kemoni Miller, 18, after they robbed him of a phone - Kenneth Ford, 23, of Roxbury, and Dejon Barnes, 18, of Worcester. The two had initially been charged with unarmed robbery.

In a statement, State Police and the DA's office say:

The investigation, led by State Police assigned to the Suffolk County Detective Unit with the assistance of Troop H detectives and Boston Police, suggests that Miller had negotiated the sale of an iPhone XS to Barnes online. On Friday night, the evidence suggests, he met with Barnes and Ford on Gallivan Boulevard. The defendants allegedly travelled to the scene in a vehicle rented by Ford’s friend. From the passenger’s seat, Barnes allegedly took the phone and closed his window on Miller’s arm as Ford accelerated at a high rate of speed.

Miller was dragged about half a mile and suffered a life-threatening head injury when he fell from the car. He was transported to Boston Medical Center but never regained consciousness.

Innocent, etc.

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Comments

It's not surprising the the dragging victim who was first robbed of his smart phone died of his injuries. Something told me that he wouldn't survive his injuries, and he didn't.

Since the two guys who did it are adults, they deserve to be tried for and charged with first-degree murder, and put behind bars.

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Voting closed 34

We have no idea if they planned this attack, or if it was a deal gone wrong and the people in the car made a series of bad decisions.

If the second, it's not murder one. We don't know yet...

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Somebody in Massachusetts can be convicted of first-degree murder for three different reasons.

One is, as you note, something that's planned specifically as a murder.

Another is a murder that occurs during the commission of a serious crime even if the initial intent was not to kill somebody.

And the third is a murder that involves "extreme atrocity or cruelty." Even if you rule out the first two, I'm guessing prosecutors could make a good case that rolling the window up on somebody's arm, then taking off at speeds of up to 50 m.p.h. for a half mile while dragging the person until he finally falls and hits his head is an example of "extreme atrocity or cruelty."

Of course, I'm not a lawyer, so you might want to consult one if you're facing a serious criminal charge.

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Voting closed 21

The fact that the guys that robbed the other person of his smart phone, purposely rolled the car window up onto their victim's arm, and then deliberately dragging him through city streets at around 50 miles an hour, causing injuries that ultimately killed him would and should be considered first-degree murder.

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Voting closed 4

Just inhumane to treat someone that way. To do that so you can steal a phone. There is a lot missing within those individuals. Either taught to hate or just evil, probably both.

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Voting closed 20

It was inhumane, and way beyond comprehension, to boot. The guys who did that to him were just plain evil and vicious.

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I'm sure their defense will go something like "there wasn't any intent". "It was an accident". "They didn't mean to they just panicked".

They may also get off because a car isn't a weapon and nobody wants to admit that it is. We all know how well this all works for serial drunk drivers in this state.

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Their defense at their arraignment on the unarmed-robbery charge was basically to blame each other for the death - which I guess shows why they had separate lawyers.

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Voting closed 10

the victim outside the car at 50 mph for about a half mile or so knew exactly what they were doing! A car IS a weapon in the wrong hands, albeit a lethal one, that can maim and/or kill people at the drop of a hat. Stop kidding yourself into thinking otherwise.

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Voting closed 12

Killings caused by Massachusetts drivers are surging. The number of victims is rising every year. Yet many drivers see stories like this one, hit and runs, drunk drivers etc and shrug. They'll only get upset if you put a bike lane in their neighborhood.

Start charging for permit parking spaces. $500 for outer neighborhoods, more for the denser ones. Reserve some of that money for the victims and the families of death and injury caused by Boston drivers.

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Voting closed 10

Nothing you wrote had anything to do with this case. By writing comments like this, you only serve to further your reputation amongst some of us of you being nothing but a anti-car zealot.

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Voting closed 51

Remain consistent and on-message - repeat, repeat, repeat your talking points - no matter how incoherent of offensive it may be.

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Your monomania about traffic enforcement really has no place in a discussion about a kid who was apparently murdered during a phone robbery.

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Voting closed 43

"This kid died, so seize money from people who weren't involved."

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It’s always better to conduct a transaction like that in a public place with a lot of people around.

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And condolences to family and friends. Heartbreaking.

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Voting closed 10

And two of its denizens were willing to kill their neighbor over a $1,000 retail item that has the same functions as a similar item which sells for a third of the price.

Brand loyalty and consumerism are a cancer upon us all. Such greed is a sickness in the head. A shame that it was not treated before this young man was dragged to his gruesome death.

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Voting closed 7

The Apple corporation could easily build features into this phone that made a stolen phone a brick, take pictures of the thief and send the thief's gps location to the true owner. They could also prevent a stolen phone from being reactivated on any kind of network (wifi or celluar). But they don't do that because then if people stopped stealing iphones they would sell less of them. And somehow Apple can separate themselves from all of the violence that results from these crimes.

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Voting closed 7

I don't have an iphone, but I would assume they have built in device tracking along with remote locking/wiping/etc like android. Plus if you report the phone lost/stolen to your carrier they will black list the IMEI number of it making it unable to be activated on US networks. Stealing a phone in this day and age is... stupid, unless they were planning on shipping/selling it internationally.

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Voting closed 7

It was actually one of its denizens. The other was from Worcester

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Only because he moved there a year or so ago. He grew up in Dorchester.

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Voting closed 5

Behind bars for the rest of their lives . All that for a phone . Throw the book at them , then throw away the key .

Brutal .

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