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Alabama men arrested on murder charges after allegedly killing 13-year-old boy in drive-by shooting

Two Alabama men were arrested on murder charges for their alleged roles in a drive-by shooting that killed a 13-year-old boy while he played on an iPad in his room on Friday night. 

Julian Lamont Gordon, 21, and James Deanthony Reed, 18, are facing capital murder charges and were being held without bond on Monday. 

Kei’lan Allen was on his bed in Tuscaloosa’s Washington Square neighborhood Friday night when his family’s home was hit by a barrage of gunfire. One of the bullets came through the 13-year-old’s window and struck him in the head, killing him. 

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The Tuscaloosa Police Department said Sunday that they believe the attack was targeting one of Kei’lan’s older family members.

“It’s a senseless murder. You know, we see it all the time where adults are shot and it’s terrible, but when it’s a kid, it takes it to another level,” Brent Blankley, a spokesman for the department, said at the scene on Friday night. 

Julian Lamont Gordon (left) and James Deanthony Reed (right) are facing murder charges for allegedly taking part in a drive-by shooting Friday night in Tuscaloosa. 
(Tuscaloosa Police Department)

“We’re all dads and moms out here,” Blankley continued. “When you see that and you see the senseless tragedy off that, it hits you different. So we’re just going to do everything we can to make these arrests.”

The department wrote on Facebook that there were so many shell casings in the road that officers had to fold business cards and use them as temporary evidence markers on Friday night. 

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Corey Prewitt, Allen’s cousin, wrote on a GoFundMe that Allen was a straight-A student who leaves behind three younger sisters and his parents. 

“Anyone who knows Kei’lan knows that he was all about peace and staying to himself,” Prewitt wrote on the fundraiser’s page. “Never once did he bother anyone nor was he a troubled child.”

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