A teenager today said he felt two men forced him and a friend to rob an Oklahoma City pharmacy May 19, refusing his pleas to let them go home.
Jevontai Ingram, 15, said he was told, "No, you're going to do the robbery."
Ingram identified co-defendants, Anthony D. Morrison, 43, and Emanuel D. Mitchell, 31, as the two men who had him and his friend, Antwun "Speedy" Parker, rob the Reliable Discount Pharmacy. "It's all lies," Mitchell told reporters during a lunch break.
The robbery attracted national attention because pharmacist Jerome Ersland fatally shot Parker during the robbery. Parker was 16.
Prosecutors have charged the pharmacist with first-degree murder, saying he went too far when he shot Parker five more times after knocking Parker unconscious with a shot to the head. Ersland contends he acted in self-defense.
The testimony today came only in the case against Morrison and Mitchell. They also are charged with first-degree murder. Oklahoma law allows conspirators to be charged with murder if an accomplice dies during a robbery.
Ingram also is charged with murder but is cooperating with prosecutors. In exchange for his cooperation, he is to be prosecuted as a youthful offender rather than an adult. The designation means he would go to a secure juvenile facility but could be held there no later five months after his 18th birthday.
Ingram, who was 14 at the time of the robbery, said Morrison and his mother were friends. Ingram testified Morrison and Mitchell had talked of taking pills from a pharmacy for a few days before the robbery. He insisted, though, that they never told him he and Parker would be involved until they were by the drugstore May 19.
He said Morrison gave him the gun and Mitchell drove them to the drugstore. He said they were given clothes to change into for the robbery.
Ingram said he pulled up the gun inside the pharmacy and had begun to ask two female employees for pills when the pharmacist shot twice. He said he fled and the pharmacist shot at him three more times outside the store.
Ingram said he never fired the gun he was given and didn't know if it was loaded. He said he didn't know Parker was killed until later that evening. He said he went to school the next day.
Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater asked, "Why did you do this? Why did you get involved in the robbery?"
"I don't know," Ingram replied.