Arraignment for Men Accused of Shooting Murder Witness

September 19, 2012 Updated Sep 19, 2012 at 12:39 PM EDT

By Kyla Igoe

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September 19, 2012 Updated Sep 19, 2012 at 12:39 PM EDT


BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) - Two young men appeared in court Wednesday, accused of shooting a witness in a murder investigation and his girlfriend. Prosecutors say this case is linked to the murder of a teenager whose body was burned in North Buffalo this summer. The shooting took place at an apartment complex on Saint Lawrence Avenue in Buffalo on August 5th. Prosecutors say 17-year-old Kentie Crump of Cheektowaga and 22-year-old Eric Smith of Tonawanda were seeking retaliation against a homicide witness. Police say Smith handed Crump a loaded revolver and opened fire on the witness. The bullet only grazed his hand and ended up striking his 22-year-old girlfriend in the leg. The bystander, 22-year-old Sharlene Session, suffered serious injuries.

"I can't go into much detail at this time," said Crump's Attorney Sam Davis. "But when the facts come out, we believe the people's version of events will be disproved."

Prosecutors say both Crump and Smith are good friends and associates of 17-year-old Demetrius Huff and 16-year-old Ezeiekile Nafi, accused stabbing another teen to death in July and setting his body on fire. Prosecutors believe Crump and Smith were seeking retaliation for their friends. Both men pled not guilty to the charges against them: 1st degree assault, and 2nd degree criminal possession of a weapon. They are remanded on $300,000 bail and are expected back in court October 19th.