18-year-old William Kern is accused of selling a handgun to 17-year-old Preston Weakland, which Weakland used to fire at two people on 17th Street and 7th Avenue at 2:38 p.m. June 12. Alisa Ramcharan, 27, is accused of selling the handgun to Kern.
Gage Harf, 16, was also charged in connection to the shooting. He faces charges of attempted homicide, criminal conspiracy, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a minor and recklessly endangering another person.
Police said video surveillance from the scene clearly shows Weakland producing a handgun, pointing it in the direction of the victims and firing one round at them. As of June 15, Weakland is still wanted. He is described as a white male measuring 5’9″ with short dark brown hair, brown eyes and a medium build.
One hour after the shot was fired on 17th Street, Ramcharan came to the Altoona Police Department to report that someone stole her handgun from her home. Ramcharan said there were no signs of forced entry and she had no suspects at the time, but added that Kern and his girlfriend had a key to her residence and would come and go as they pleased, according to the charges filed.
Police said they did not believe Ramcharan was telling the truth. She agreed to give a second statement when police approached her in the lobby of the police department. During her second statement, police said Ramcharan admitted to lying the first time because she didn’t want anyone to get in trouble.
Ramcharan and Kern allegedly made a deal for Ramcharan to sell her handgun and two loaded magazines in exchange for $250, which Kern agreed to pay her for at a later date and time. Police noted Kern is not old enough to purchase a handgun or possess a concealed carry permit in Pennsylvania. During her interview, Ramcharan said she has attempted to contact Kern so she could ask him to return the gun, but Kern did not respond to her messages.
Collin Brothers, 16, was arrested over the weekend in connection to the shooting. He also faces charges of attempted homicide, criminal conspiracy and aggravated assault.
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Harf said in an interview with police that he did not know the victims and did not know Weakland had a handgun in his possession. Harf said he was “in shock” when Weakland pulled out the gun and fired.
When Kern was interviewed, he told police both Weakland and Harf contacted him multiple times requesting to purchase the handgun from him and that both of them offered to pay for it with cash and/or illegal drugs. Kern said he dismantled the gun and cleaned it with a bleach/alcohol solution to remove any fingerprints.
Kern, Harf and Ramcharan all have preliminary hearings scheduled for June 23.
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