The Miami teenager who is charged with murdering Miami Senior High School football coach Corey Smith is the son of a man who hijacked a UPS truck and led police on a high-speed chase last year.
Charles Alexander, 15, was taken into custody Thursday afternoon and charged with murdering Smith and taking $7,450 in cash from his home.
Charles, who has a history of mental problems, faces charges of second-degree murder and armed grand theft. He will be charged as an adult, the Miami Herald reported.
The teenager was staying overnight in Smith’s home when he used the coach’s own 9mm handgun to shoot him dead in his den on Monday morning.
Smith is a distant cousin to Lamar Alexander, an ex-convict who hijacked a UPS truck and led police on a high-speed chase that ended on a busy Miramar street last December.
Lamar Alexander, 41, his accomplice Ronnie Jerome Hill, 41, were killed in a shootout with police. The UPS driver Frank Ordonez, 27, and a motorist were also killed by stray bullets.
Smith considered Lamar Alexander to be his brother and the boy his nephew.
“In life, you gotta make better decisions,” Smith said of Lamar Alexander the day after the UPS shooting. “We weren’t raised like that. I love my brother, but he’s been making bad decisions his whole life.”
Smith’s wife said they hadn’t seen the teen since the hijacking last year.
“He asked to come over,” said Amina Smith. “We hadn’t seen him since his dad passed. Corey picked him up Sunday night and he spent the night. I left to go to work.”
Hours later, police responded to a 911 call of shots fired inside the house on the 2100 block of Northwest 97th Street. Charles told police he was studying when he heard gunshots.
He was interviewed for four hours at the Miami-Dade Police Department and released. Police say he gave “inconsistent statements” about what happened inside the house, and he denied any involvement in the murder.
On Wednesday, his mother called police and said she was “in fear of the defendant,” according to the arrest report obtained by The Herald.
She said Charles confessed to her that he had killed his uncle, the report said.
The murder weapon was found in a trash can outside the home. Over $7,000 in cash was also found inside his jeans hidden in a black bag.
A Miami-Dade juvenile circuit judge on Thursday ordered that Charles be held without bail in a juvenile detention center.