Charges dropped against teen, filed against another man in youth center shooting

Published 12:04 am Thursday, January 12, 2017

NATCHEZ — Charges have been dropped against a Natchez teen, and charges filed against another man in connection with the shooting death of a woman at the Natchez Youth Center Dec. 30.

Natchez Police Chief Daniel White said charges against Jadarrius McKnight, 17, have been dropped.

McKnight and Kristopher Nelson, 17, 309 Bluebird Drive, were originally charged in the shooting death of 21-year-old Destiney Kennedy.
Nelson remains charged in connection with the shooting.

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Charges have also now been filed against Fredrick V. Washington Jr., 25, 16 Stardust Drive, for murder and two counts of aggravated assault.

Washington was also arrested Jan. 6 for felony child abuse. He and Audrey R. Cotton, 23, 137 Lewis Drive, are accused of abusing their baby, causing head trauma, stemming from a November hospital visit when the baby was 6 weeks old.

White would not explain why charges against McKnight were dropped and charges against Washington were filed, saying he did not want to jeopardize the ongoing investigation.

Washington remains jailed on an $850,000 bond.

Nelson is in jail on a $600,000 bond.

Kennedy is one of three local residents killed in unrelated shootings since Dec. 30.

Two of those shootings have occurred inside the city limits.

White said the police department has increased the presence of officers on the streets by adding a split shift in light of the recent violence.

“We are out there, and we have beefed up patrols and have (more) officers out there,” he said.

Anyone with information about the shootings should contact Crime Stoppers at 601-442-5000.

Crime Stoppers offers a reward of up to $1,000 for tips leading to the arrest and conviction of suspects.

Calls are anonymous.