A man in Florida has been arrested after police say he killed his lover to prevent the victim from exposing their relationship and outing him as gay.
Jakari Webb, 19, was taken into custody Tuesday night and charged with fatally shooting Telan Mann, 19, who was gunned down just before 2 a.m. on Thursday, June 23, near Oak Tree Circle and Forest Glen Boulevard in Daytona Beach.
Units from the Daytona Beach Police Department were patrolling in the vicinity when the shooting took place and heard the gunshots. They arrived on the scene almost immediately, where they found Mann “in a pool of blood with multiple bullet wounds on his body” according to a statement from police. Mann passed away at the scene.
“Our homicide unit has been working this case non-stop since Telan was fatally shot,” DBPD Police Chief Jakari Young said in the statement. “I commend them for a job well done and for providing Telan’s family some closure. It doesn’t replace his life, but I hope it does give his loved ones some measure of peace moving forward.”
Police said at a news conference yesterday they have evidence showing Webb and Mann, who was out, were involved in an online relationship for about four months, and that Webb was fearful Mann would expose their relationship and out Webb as gay on social media. The pair met for the first time in person last Thursday when police allege Webb shot and killed Mann.
A neighbor told local NBC affiliate WTVJ she heard at least seven gunshots.
Technology and video surveillance proved key to cracking the case, with investigators pouring through Mann’s text and social media messages and viewing over 120 hours of security cam videos, which they used to track Webb’s movements.
Mann’s grandmother, Deborah Mann, had earlier posted pictures of Webb to social media, asking for the public’s help in finding her grandson’s alleged killer.
Friends told local TV station WESH that Mann was a joyful person.
“He never wanted nothing bad for nobody. He always wanted everybody to be on good terms. He always was the positive one around the group. He never wanted any bad energy at all,” a friend of the victim, who wished not to be identified, told the station.
Webb has been charged with first-degree murder, a probation violation, and resisting arrest after he tried to flee from SWAT and K-9 officers. Young said they are exploring additional hate crime charges due to the nature of the case.
At yesterday’s press conference, he decried the senseless nature of the crime.
“It’s extremely tragic and it’s just completely unnecessary,” Young said.
Follow More Advocate News on Pride Today Below