High School Student Allegedly Shoots Teenager Dead After Feud Erupts At Basketball Game, Police Say

Source: Newport News police; MEGA

Dec. 16 2021, Published 7:38 p.m. ET

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A feud that started during a high school basketball game in Virginia spilled out into the parking lot, where a teenager allegedly shot another dead, police said.

On Dec. 14, two groups at the game between Menchville High School and Woodside High School began gesturing back and forth to each other, video footage allegedly shows, according to Newport News police.

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Court documents obtained by WTKR state Damari Batten, an 18-year-old student at Warwick High School, said he left the game early and headed to his friend’s car in the parking lot. While standing outside the vehicle, he claimed to police, four or five of the people he was involved in the feud with “jumped” him.

Batten, court documents state, said he attempted to get into the front passenger side of the car and shut the door, but one of the alleged assailants held it open and tried to assault him as the others, he claimed, attempted to get to him from the driver’s side door.

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Batten allegedly grabbed a gun that was on the vehicle’s floorboard and fired a shot toward the driver’s side, striking 17-year-old Justice Dunham, a student at Woodside High School.

Dunham died from his injury at the scene.

Police recovered the alleged murder weapon as well as two other firearms found in a vehicle the victim arrived to the game in, according to WTKR.

Batten was arrested and faces charges of second-degree murder, use of a firearm in commission of a felony, and possession of a firearm on school property.


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