17-year-old suspect identified in killing of Tabb High student Dylan Peters

jsomers@dailypress.com
17-year-old suspect identified in murder of Dylan Peters.

The Grafton High student charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Tabb High School student Dylan Peters is 17-year-old Evan Tyler, who was previously identified only by his initials.

Tyler appeared by video conference Thursday at a detention hearing at the York Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, but Tyler will be charged and tried as an adult. Under state law, juveniles older than 14 who are charged with murder must be charged as adults.

York-Poquoson Commonwealth's Attorney Ben Hahn said via email that he would file a "formal, written notice" that Tyler will be tried as an adult even though he is not "technically required" to.

"Since he is charged with second-degree murder and is over the age of 14, a preliminary hearing is required to be held in order to certify the charge to the Circuit Court," Hahn said.

Judge Wade Bowie asked Tyler's defense attorney, Shawn Overbey, if he was going to request that Tyler be released from the detention center pending trial. Overbey said he would not challenge Tyler's detention because of the nature of the charge and the likelihood that the judge would deny a request to release him.

Tyler is being held at the Merrimac Juvenile Detention Center.

Peters, who was also 17, died on Jan. 27 after being shot several times through the front door of his home.

Tyler, who lived in the Greenland subdivision in Tabb, a few miles from Peters' home, was arrested the next day. In addition to second-degree murder, he is charged with attempted robbery and the use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.

At Thursday's hearing, Peters' sister, Melanie Wright, jumped to the edge of her seat when Tyler's face appeared on the video monitor. Peters' mother, Theresa Wright, stared at the television screen. After about five minutes Theresa Wright left the hearing, shaking and near tears.

The next hearing in the case is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. April 23 in York Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court.

According to the Code of Virginia a juvenile court must "conduct a preliminary hearing whenever a juvenile 14 years of age or older is charged with murder."

A second person, 20-year-old Tevin Lambert, has been charged with conspiracy to commit robbery in connection with Peters' death. A preliminary hearing for Lambert is scheduled for April 16.

Somers can be reached by phone at 757-298-5176.

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