Teen said he had ‘weird feeling’ that he was about to be robbed of gun — so he shot first

Teen said he had ‘weird feeling’ that he was about to be robbed of gun — so he shot first

An 18-year-old Newport News man told police he thought a man and teenager were about to rob him of a gun on Monday — so he shot them first.

Diontae Flythe told detectives that shortly before the 6:20 p.m. shooting on Wickham Avenue, he took a 9mm Taurus handgun from a neighbor’s couch and put it in his pocket.

But when he went back to his apartment, he said, he overheard Malicah Antonio Forbes, 20, of Hampton, “talking on the phone about selling a Taurus firearm.”

“Flythe said he assumed Forbes was talking about the firearm he had in his pocket,” according to a criminal complaint filed in Newport News General District Court.

Flythe also told detectives that he then overheard Ma’alik Herbert Edwards, 17, telling someone on the phone that he “wanted to leave.”

“Flythe believed Edwards and Forbes were preparing to rob him of the firearm,” Police Detective M.A. Clarke wrote in the complaint. “Flythe walked out of the bathroom, pointed his firearm at Forbes, and pulled the trigger.”

But there was no round in the chamber.

“Forbes attempted to reach for his firearm, which was on his hip,” the complaint said, but Flythe was able to slide a new round into the chamber and shoot first.

“Flythe then turned and shot Edwards twice, causing him to fall in the kitchen,” the complaint said.

Forbes and Flythe ran out of the house — Forbes out the front door and Flythe out back. Flythe fired twice more at Forbes outside, near 36th Street and Wickham Avenue, the complaint said.

Police got an alert of a shooting from “ShotSpotter” — a system to identify gunshot locations by way of their acoustic signals. Two officers in the area soon saw Flythe running past, shirtless with a gun in hand, the complaint said.

He tossed the weapon near some railroad tracks, a search warrant affidavit said. But officers caught up with him and found the firearm.

Forbes, who had life-threatening wounds, was taken to Riverside Regional Medical Center. His condition couldn’t be determined Friday.

Officers at the scene also heard screams coming from the Wickham Avenue apartment, and they found Edwards suffering from multiple gunshot wounds in the kitchen, near seven cartridge casings.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Flythe is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated malicious wounding and several gun counts.

During an interrogation on Monday evening, the complaint said, Flythe confessed to shooting both Edwards and Forbes.

Flythe explained that he was living in the Wickham Avenue apartment with his aunt, brother and teenage cousin. Edwards, he said, lived in the home “off and on,” and Flythe told police that his cousin is pregnant with Edwards’ unborn child.

Flythe told detectives that when Forbes came to the home on Monday, he got a “weird feeling,” about something about to happen.

“Flythe’s neighbor was not home,” the complaint said, but Flythe said he “let himself in” and took the gun from the couch. He then went home and began to get dressed and pack his bags when he overheard the Edwards and Forbes on the phone.

On Friday, Edwards’ 16-year-old girlfriend said she “doesn’t want to believe” that her cousin killed him, saying he was looking forward to his baby daughter who is seven months along.

“He was just focused on having a baby,” she said. “That’s all he talked about … He was funny, sweet, goofy, and he liked to eat — he liked to eat anything, to be honest.”

Meanwhile, the next door neighbor told the Daily Press that Flythe’s story about retrieving a gun from her couch isn’t true.

“If he said he came to my house and found the gun, nobody ran into my house at all,” said that neighbor, Ebony Beamon. “I was home, I was present, the entire time, and he didn’t run in here.”

The only person who came in that evening, she said, was Edwards’ girlfriend after he was shot. “I was trying to console her,” Beamon said.

Flythe has a probable cause hearing set for Nov. 10 on the murder charge and related gun counts.

Peter Dujardin, 757-247-4749, [email protected]

Comment here