A 14-year-old boy has been charged with murder after he allegedly shot 13-year-old Lucia Whalen Bremer multiple times and killed her on Friday afternoon. Bremer was walking on a path in Henrico County, Virginia with one of her friends at the time she was she was shot, police said.
Bremer was a pronounced dead at a hospital later on Friday. The teen charged with second-degree murder in Bremer’s death was not arrested until the next day; he fled the scene. Police confirmed that on Saturday afternoon the suspect was arrested for “second-degree murder, possession of a firearm by a juvenile, and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.”
The suspect made his initial appearance in court during a virtual hearing on Monday. The 14-year-old, whose name has not been made public due to his age, may end up being charged as an adult. The suspect will presumably be identified if he does end up being tried as an adult. It’s also possible that the charges may be upgraded. Henrico’s Commonwealth Attorney Shannon Taylor noted that possibility.
The suspect is being held without bond, WRIC reported. The report said that a status hearing is scheduled to take place on May 4th. Authorities have not released information about a suspected motive or whether the victim knew the killer (an unnamed source told WRIC that Bremer didn’t know the shooter).
Bremer’s family posted Saturday on their Liberty Tree Farm Facebook page that their daughter was “beloved” and a “joyful farmer.”
“Liberty Tree Farm is saddened to report that our beloved daughter and joyful farmer, Lucia Whalen Bremer, was killed in a senseless act of gun violence on March 26. Thank you for keeping our family in your thoughts as we navigate the next few week,” the post said. “If you have any information to help support the ongoing investigation, please contact the Henrico County Police at 804-501-5794.”
Quioccasin Middle School Principal Melanie Phipps mourned Bremer’s death in a statement issued publicly on the school’s website over the weekend. Phipps noted that Lucia’s name, which means “light,” is the “perfect way to describe her”:
Dear Griffin Family:
With her family’s permission, I am heartbroken and devastated to share news that has shocked and saddened our community. As you may know, our 8th grade student Lucia Bremer died on Friday. Words can barely begin to describe the tragedy and loss for our community and beyond, but I will try.
Lucia was funny. She loved to tell jokes and made people laugh. She was an amazing public speaker, and you would just listen in awe as she spoke. Lucia was wise beyond her years. Talking to her didn’t feel like talking to a middle schooler. Lucia was exceptional; truly one-of-a-kind. She was brave, hardworking, and kind to everyone. Her smile would light up the entire room. In fact, her mother told me that Lucia’s name means “light”, which is just the perfect way to describe her. She radiated happiness, and she loved our school.
Earlier today, the QMS faculty met to hear this news together, and to continue forming our plans to meet everyone’s needs for this weekend, and when we return to school on Monday.
In this time of physical distancing, the impact of grieving alone can increase the chances of anxiety, depression, and complicated grief, so it is even more critical to make connections for our students and families. We don’t have to pretend that we’re not tremendously affected by this.
On Sunday (March 28), we plan to have an opportunity for our staff, students and families to grieve and support one another in a safe, virtual space. Please show your support by wearing gray and white, two of Lucia’s favorite colors. Please check your email for the link.
In addition, I would like to share these resources with you which may be helpful in speaking with your student(s): check your email for the link.
I will continue to provide updates on the student and staff supports that will be available for school on Monday. Also, our school will have an additional police presence on Monday, which we appreciate to ensure that everyone feels safe on what we know will be a most difficult day.
I am so sorry to be sharing this heartbreaking message. Thank you for keeping Lucia, her family and those involved in this tragedy in your thoughts and prayers. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if there is something you’d like me to know.
With Griffin love,
Lucia was going to help run an Easter Egg hunt for local children, Meagan Cinder told WTVR.
[Image via WRIC screengrab]
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