BALDWIN COUNTY, Ala. (WALA) - Baldwin County District Attorney Hallie Dixon and Baldwin County Sheriff Huey "Hoss" Mack announced Thursday they will not file criminal charges against the three adults involved in the shooting of Summer Moody on Gravine Island.
"No matter how terrible the result, not every accident is a crime and what we have here is a horrible, terrible, tragic accidental shooting," said Dixon.
Dixon said William "Nick" Hearn, Lonnie Davison, and Larry Dean Duncan, Jr. were staying at a camp on the island with their families, and one of the men went to check on problems with the camp's generator.
She said that's when the man heard what he suspected to be burglars and woke the other two men to investigate.
Mack said the evidence shows the adults confronted Scott Byrd and Dillon Tyree, one of which had a gun. He said that Moody and Parnell were hiding behind a bush, unseen.
Investigators said the men fired warning shots away from the teenagers they saw, one of which hit Moody.
"Ms moody was apparently kneeling behind a palmetto bush approximately 15 to 18 yards away," said Sheriff Mack.
"She literally could not have been seen and that the shot we believe struck her, struck her because the individuals involved fired away from the burglars," responded Dixon.
Deputies said the men didn't initially realize anyone had been shot. They said when it was discovered the girl had been hit, the men immediately sought medical attention for her.
"The three individuals from Mobile County began to render aide, contacted 911 and transported Miss Moody to Clover Leaf landing," said Sheriff Mack.
Investigators said there was no evidence of criminal intent in the shooting, and that the incident has been evaluated for all possible charges including negligence and murder.
Dixon said, "The evidence does not fit the crime."
She said the federal government would determine if the men violated any possible probation violations concerning the use of guns.
Dixon stressed that the district attorney's office and investigators did not let emotion or public opinion affect their decisions. She said they relied only on the evidence when making their decisions.
However, Dixon said this is a case that makes anybody that is human want to see someone punished for the death of Moody.
Mack said investigators have recovered a .22 rifle and a knife the teens were armed with during the incident. He also said the teens had a .32 handgun that has not been recovered.
Dixon said as of now, the three teens have been arrested for first degree burglary, but more charges could be coming. She said the teens are suspected of two other robberies on the island.
She said the district attorney's office and investigators will evaluate the teens' involvement in Moody's death according to the felony murder doctrine.
"We will have to step back quite honestly and be looking at the felony murder doctrine more clearly. If it applied, it would apply to all three from what I can tell," said Dixon.
She said at this point, the shooting will be reviewed by a grand jury next week, and those findings will determine the next steps in the process.
Mack said he is satisfied that a thorough investigation has been completed and they answered as many questions as possible.
Dixon praised the sheriff's office and marine police for their hard work in the investigation.
The DA said outside of the courtroom she hopes they provide answers for the Moody family and help bring them closure from this tragedy.
This announcement comes less than 24-hours after the passing Summer Moody .
An attorney for the Moody family said Wednesday night the family decided to take the teen off the ventilator, and she passed away a short time later.
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