Juvenile Passengers Face Murder Charges in Andover Hit-and-Run

November 14, 2017 03:44 PM

Two juveniles in the car when a teen was killed in an Andover hit-and-run are facing second-degree murder charges while committing a felony.

Tristan Robinson, 17, was killed Friday in the hit-and-run. Police later said they were investigating the incident as a murder and sought three suspects: A 17-year-old boy, 16-year-old boy and 19-year-old Loren James Gafner, who police say was driving the car. 


RELATED: Anoka County Authorities are Investigating Fatal Hit-and-Run as Murder, All 3 Suspects

Juvenile petitions filed Tuesday in Anoka County detail the following events of an alleged drug deal-turned-robbery, as well as Robinson's final moments before the suspects fled: 

Robinson's friends told police he stepped outside after playing video games because he thought he heard other friends arriving.

RELATED: Victim Identified in Fatal Hit-and-Run Crash in Andover

The friends said they heard a dull collision and screeching tires but did not see a vehicle. When they went outside, they saw Robinson in the street with multiple injuries, according to the sheriff's office. Robinson was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police responding to the scene found a digital scale in the driveway and "observed drag marks, consisting of hair and blue denim, indicating someone had been dragged ... to a location about 20 feet away." 

Police found a Snapchat group message that referenced someone possessing high-grade marijuana. Police say some people on the thread were interested in buying it.

RELATED: Relatives of Hit-and-Run Victim say he was Devoted to Family

Police called the 16-year-old suspect for questioning, and he told police the 17-year-old suspect and Gafner picked him up to go get some weed. The 16-year-old told authorities the the two told him to get the marijuana and just take it.

The 16-year-old suspect took the bag from Robinson and ran to the car, the court records show. Robinson followed and tried to hold the door open, but the 16-year-old said the 17-year-old suspect pulled out a 9-mm pistol and pointed it at Robinson. 

Robinson grabbed onto the door handle and was dragged as Gafner backed up, then Robinson fell. The 16-year-old reported he then heard multiple "thuds" and said the 17-year-old suspect and Gafner were laughing as Robinson laid in the street in the fetal position and not moving.

The 16-year-old also said the 17-year-old and Gafner threatened to kill him if he told anyone what happened.

The juvenile petitions were filed Tuesday, and charges were still pending for Gafner.


Theresa Malloy

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