2 teens to be tried as adults in fatal shooting of former boxer

Two teenagers will be tried as adults in the March 30 killing of Ronald Glenn Gullette Jr., a former professional heavyweight boxer who was headed to church when he was robbed and fatally shot in his driveway.

The cases of Amari Covington and Naquan Curry were moved from juvenile court to Mecklenburg County Superior Court after a judge found probable cause that the teens had committed first-degree murder, the Mecklenburg District Attorney’s Office announced on Friday.

According to state law, judges must transfer juveniles to Superior Court if they find probable cause that juveniles 13 or older have committed Class A felonies. First-degree murder is a Class A felony.

Covington and Curry will now be prosecuted in Superior Court by the district attorney’s homicide team, the office announced.

The teens have each been charged with first-degree murder, four counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon, five counts of conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon and attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon. They are in custody at a juvenile detention facility.

Also charged in the case are Randy Shaun Lloyd, 16, with first-degree murder, and Bobby Lannell Hargrove, 16, with being an accessory after a murder. Lloyd also was charged in several other robberies that happened in an eight-hour span that morning.

Gullette was killed near the end of a violent crime spree that police said spanned the city.

The suspects are accused of robbing a jogger of $4 and following a 66-year-old man to his home, where they carjacked his minivan.

Police believe Gullette was the final victim just before 10 a.m. He was running late for services at University City Church near West W.T. Harris Boulevard and had sent his wife and two sons ahead, according to Thomas Evans, a family friend who knew Gullette since they were teenagers.

Gullette was a father of five with eight grandchildren. He and his family lived in the Hemby Woods neighborhood off West Sugar Creek Road.

After neighbors called 911 with reports of hearing shots, police found Gullette – 6 feet 2 inches and about 260 pounds – with a gunshot wound. Medic pronounced him dead at the scene.

Neighbors had seen a gray pickup truck and blue car speed away.

Gullette took up boxing to lose weight but got so good he decided to turn professional. He fought in 28 bouts, mostly in the Carolinas. His biggest match was in Atlantic City, a knockout loss to Shannon Briggs, the former heavyweight champion.

Evans told the Observer shortly after his friend’s death that Gullette was a strong man with a kind heart. “That’s not the type of person that something like this is supposed to happen to because he was such a good, genuine person,” Evans said.