2 teens charged in fatal shooting of Purcell Pearson; both remain on the run

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Criminal charges were filed Monday, against two suspects connected to the homicide of Purcell Pearson on Feb. 6.

Tyrell Joseph and Ismael Moreno, both 17 years old, are each charged with one count of first degree reckless homicide as party to a crime, according to the Milwaukee Police Department. Police say both Joseph and Moreno remain on the run.

“There isn’t anything to suggest that we know where they’re located and obviously that’s where we’re looking for the media and the public’s assistance," Milwaukee Police Sgt. Erwin Estacio told CBS 58.

Pearson was fatally shot near 22nd and Wisconsin the afternoon of Feb. 6. 

Surveillance video shows him hanging onto the driver's side window of a van as the driver crosses an embankment and goes the wrong way down Wisconsin Avenue. Then, Pearson was shot by someone inside the van.

According to a criminal complaint, an officer on duty in the area saw Pearson hanging onto the vehicle, but lost sight of the van due to a snow bank. He then heard a loud "pop," and saw the van leaving the area. The officer said he saw Pearson stand up from the street, run about 20 yards and then collapse. 

As the officer began to approach Pearson, the complaint says a person came running toward him, stating "that's my brother." He also stated, "he was selling the glasses and they robbed him and shot him."

Pearson's brother told authorities he and Purcell lived together and had been selling designer glasses for a few months. He said they would buy the glasses on DHGate and then sell them in Milwaukee. The brother told officers he and Purcell had posted glasses for sale about a week prior, and on Feb. 6 they received a message from someone named "Pablo Fernandez." He said Purcell left the apartment that afternoon and said that he was selling two pairs for $500. 

Officers determined that the account connected to "Pablo Fernandez" was linked to the phone number of an adult woman, who identified her son as Tyrell Joseph.

Two days later, police found the suspect van parked across the street from the home of Joseph's family. A family member was able to identify Tyrell in a surveillance photo taken of the van from outside a gas station on Feb. 6. The relative also identified Ismael Moreno from photos.

“No one really suspects that when you’re trying to provide a product to someone that your life will be jeopardized," Tearman Spencer, Pearson's uncle and Milwaukee city attorney, said.

Spencer thinks his nephew was tragically caught off guard. He said he trusts the investigation will bring justice.

“It should not discourage anyone for trying to be their own boss and be productive in the community," said Spencer. "But I’ll say be a little more conscious in how you’re dealing with people because not everyone views life and the importance of what you’re doing the same way you do.”

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Joseph and/or Moreno is asked to contact Milwaukee police at 414-935-7360 or Crime Stoppers at 414-224-TIPS.

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