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Charges in robbery upgraded as teen dies

SNELLVILLE -- A 17-year-old Lawrenceville resident died a week after being shot in the head as part of a reported drug robbery gone awry, upgrading charges against the alleged shooter to murder, police said Wednesday.

Devonte Bowles died Wednesday from head injuries suffered when an alleged robbery victim, Erick Moncrieffe, 21, of Snellville, opened fire the afternoon of June 16, police said. Aggravated assault charges against Moncrieffe have thus been upgraded to murder. He faces drug possession charges as well.

Police said Bowles was the front-seat passenger with a carload of people who attempted to rob purported drug dealers at a home on Spring Mesa Drive in Snellville. Their plans crumbled, and the residents opened fire as the would-be robbers attempted to drive away, police said.

The driver, Walter Simon, 35, of Detroit, was also shot, and the car veered into a wooded ditch on Springdale Road as officers arrived on scene. He was later released from hospital care and detained on charges of armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery.

Two others in the car -- Kara Casey, 35, of Detroit, and Anthony Trim, 24, of Lawrenceville -- are charged with armed robbery and three counts of false imprisonment.

In addition to Moncrieffe, another person in the house -- 19-year-old Travys Davy, of Decatur -- was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Police arrested the only man suspected of fleeing the wreck scene, Cortez McClain, 20, as he showed up at the county's central courthouse for an unrelated hearing Tuesday. He, too, is charged with armed robbery and three counts of false imprisonment.