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Mechanicsville mom talks about death of her 16-year-old son

MECHANICSVILLE, Va. (WTVR) – The mother of Brett Wells, the Mechanicsville teenager shot and killed over the weekend, said something needs to be done to keep guns out of the hands of teenagers.

Shannon Wells spoke to CBS 6 reporter Catie Beck on Monday, less than 48 hours after her son Brett was shot and killed in their Mechanicsville home.

Wells said when she left her home Saturday night to go out for dinner, her 16-year-old son and his friends were hanging out and shooting pool.

Wells said at some point in the evening, three guys showed up at the home, one of whom Brett knew. Wells said when her son asked the men to leave, an argument ensued.

She said one of the men shot Brett in the chest and then shot one of Brett’s friends in the hand. The friend, Aaron Evans, is expected to make a full recovery.

Shannon Wells said she returned home to find sheriff’s deputies at her house. She said she had an instant feeling that her son was dead.

The suspects in the shooting, none of them juveniles, were arrested on Monday, and charged with first-degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, and aggravated malicious wounding.

Investigators arrested Da’von T. Byars, 19, of the 1400 block of Mechanicsville Turnpike in the City of Richmond; Kevin M. Drayton, Jr., 18, of the 8300 block of Rollins Lane in Mechanicsville; and, Xavia S. Highsmith, 18, of the 2000 block of N. 28th Street in the City of Richmond.

All three are being held at Pamunkey Regional Jail in Hanover.

In a statement released after arrests were made, officials said that the preliminary investigation reveals that the shooting occurred over an alleged marijuana transaction.

The suspects were at the house to purchase marijuana, although their actual intention was to steal it, said Hanover County Sheriff’s Office. A physical altercation occurred as the three suspects tried to allegedly make off with the marijuana, and at that time Wells was shot in the chest.

Wells said that Brett, who was a sophomore in high school, planned to study graphic art at Virginia Commonwealth University upon graduating from Atlee High School.

She said Brett was an active member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church. His funeral will be held at the church Tuesday evening. There will be vigil for Wells Monday night. Jon Burkett will cover the vigil for the evening news.


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