Two teenagers are facing charges in the shooting death of a Ross High School student on Tuesday, authorities said.
Austin Hensley, 18, was found shot at a home in the 900 block of Hine Road in Ross Township.
Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones said a 17-year-old male is charged with murder, aggravated robbery and tampering with evidence. Another teen, also a 17-year-old male, is facing a theft of firearm charge, according to deputies. Jones said that teen stole his father's handgun.
"It is always tragic when life is lost, especially when everyone involved is so young," Jones said.
The victim and suspect met to trade guns, according to Jones. He called them "wannabe gangsters." He said the suspect intended to rob the victim. During the attempted robbery, a scuffle took place and the victim was shot and killed.
"People don't accidentally get shot very often," Jones said. "Not very often. When you have people that are inexperienced, but they think they're tough, they have guns, they bring guns, they think they're gangsters. Usually, somebody dies."
Both suspects and the victim were Ross High School students, Principal Brian Martin said in a written statement.
"We loved Austin, and our prayers go our to his friends and family," Martin wrote. "These events are yet another reminder that no community is immune from the scourge of senseless gun violence. We are sure that as the police investigation unfolds, more details will come to light. However, that does not change the fact that a young man has lost his life and, regardless of the circumstances, that is a tragedy."
Hensley was a junior at the school, Martin said. He said additional support staff were on hand Wednesday for students.
The shooting happened at the shooting suspect's home at about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jones said. Hensley died from the gunshot wound at 9:40 p.m., according to the coroner's report. Detectives and deputies remained at the house finishing the investigation Wednesday morning.
The shooting suspect was booked into the Butler County Juvenile Detention Center shortly after midnight Tuesday. His pretrial date was set for 1:30 p.m. Feb. 12 before Judge Roman.
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