Teen indicted

Teen indicted

It’s been two weeks since 15-year-old Bryce Bell was certified to stand trial as an adult for allegedly killing Anthony Wilson and as of Aug. 7, it was determined he will, in fact, face a charge of capital murder in a Jefferson County courtroom.

The indictment handed up by a Jefferson County grand jury accuses the teen of the April 11 homicide in Beaumont’s Dowlen West Neighborhood, which has been chronicled extensively throughout officers’ investigation and the Jefferson County District Attorney’s prosecution to date.

Wilson, father of two and Beaumont businessowner, was killed around 10:15 p.m. after confronting suspects who were burglarizing vehicles in the neighborhood. Arriving officers located Wilson in the 6800 block of Madrid Street suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Beaumont EMS responded to the scene and pronounced him dead.

Through an outpouring of information from the local community of photos and video of suspicious activity, detectives were able to narrow down their search to three teen suspects, ages 15, 17 and 18.

The two older teens were identified as Jamirious Jantrel Gardner and John James Cook in April following their arrests for the crime. In speaking with detectives, Gardner admitted to being involved in Wilson’s death. He also implicated Cook was involved during questioning, which an eyewitness, who was at the scene shortly before Wilson was shot, was able to confirm.

Following their interviews with police, officers also questioned Bernard Bell Jr., who was tasked with disposing of the murder weapon – a firearm that had been stolen in a previous auto burglary days before Wilson’s death. Bell pleaded guilty July 23 to a federal charge of felon in possession of a firearm and will be sentenced in the coming weeks.

Bryce Bell’s identity had been withheld from the public due to his age, but as of July 23, the younger Bell was certified as an adult by Judge Randy Shelton, allowing the DA’s office to move forward with prosecuting the young accused gunman. 

Read more about the Aug. 7 indictment in this week's edition of The Examiner.