BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — A 14-year-old boy admitted to police that he shot a 17-year-old Battle Creek Central High School student while trying to steal his car, court documents show.
According to a probable cause affidavit, 14-year-old Justice Chimner admitted to police that earlier in the day on Feb. 16, the day of Jack Snyder’s death, he and a friend were hanging out. He saw his friend have a conversation on Snapchat with someone who asked the pair to steal a vehicle in exchange for money. Chimner said he did not know the person but that his friend had stolen vehicles for the person before.
Around 11 p.m., Chimner told police he and his friend were walking down Battle Creek Avenue in Battle Creek when they saw Snyder, who asked them if they needed a ride home because it was extremely cold that night. Chimner told detectives he thought Snyder was trying to be a “nice guy,” according to the probable cause document.
The pair got into Snyder’s car and he drove east on Battle Creek Avenue. When they reached the intersection of SW Capital Ave, Chimner’s friend told Snyder to pull over and took the keys out of the ignition. Chimner, who admitted he stole his mother’s Highpoint 9 mm pistol earlier that day, aimed the gun at Snyder. He said Snyder reached for the gun and into a pouch on his jacket. Chimner thought he was reaching for a gun and shot Snyder twice.
Police found Snyder’s body next to his car around 12:10 a.m. Feb. 17 laying face down with “a lot of blood,” court documents said. EMTs tried to help him but he died at the scene, according to police.
Snyder’s uncle told News 8 his nephew was at his girlfriend’s birthday party on Feb. 16. Since the weather was cold, he went to warm up his car and saw two kids walking. He offered them a ride. Police said they tried to carjack him.
Chimner was arrested and his friend turned himself in. The friend, who police have not named, was charged with murder and carjacking on Feb. 21.