17-year-old charged in deadly Dallas Co. home invasion - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

17-year-old charged in deadly Dallas Co. home invasion

Elijah Harris (Source: Dallas County District Attorney's Office) Elijah Harris (Source: Dallas County District Attorney's Office)
Jesscilus Phillips' house. (Source: WSFA 12 News) Jesscilus Phillips' house. (Source: WSFA 12 News)
The victim, Jesscilus Phillips (Courtesy: Phillips Family) The victim, Jesscilus Phillips (Courtesy: Phillips Family)
DALLAS CO., AL (WSFA) -

A Selma teenager has been arrested several months after prosecutors say he broke into a Dallas County house to steal things and ended up killing the homeowner.  

Elijah Harris, 17, is charged with capital murder and burglary in the death of Jesscilus Phillips, 39. 

Sheriff's deputies were called to a residence on Laredo Court around 5:30 a.m. Tuesday, May 19th on reports of a “subject down.” When they arrived, they found Phillips lying face down in his driveway in a pool of blood. He died from at least one gunshot wound to the torso in his front yard. 

The scene is just outside the Selma city limits at housing on the former Craig Air Force Base.

Chris Edmunds is left wondering why his father-in-law was targeted. 

“He was loved. He was a loved individual. one thing that sparked his life was our kids. He just loved his grand babies. It's just sad that somebody had to do this because they don't have anything,” Edmunds said. “It's just like somebody just really wanted him dead for no reason.”

After the fatal incident, investigators revealed that at least one armed intruder smashed the back sliding glass door and made their way inside the house where Phillips was asleep upstairs. When they encountered each other, Phillips was shot. 

“All indications is that he was actually awakened in his sleep. He was still in his nightwear. We believe he was in his bedroom at the time and we don't know if he heard a noise and actually tried to walk downstairs and confront the perpetrator or he heard a noise or he was going to investigate,” said Captain Mike Granthum with the Dallas County Sheriff's Department. “We believe it may have been a burglary gone bad.”

The home invasion occurred between 2-3 a.m. Phillips' body was discovered by a resident in the neighborhood hours later and they notified authorities. The victim's girlfriend was at work during that time.

“He was actually shot inside the residence and due to his strength and courage, he was able to make it outside. We don't know if he was trying to get help or if he was chasing the perpetrator but he did end up outside his home,” Cpt. Granthum added.

The investigation spanned months, with the victim's family and authorities turning to the public for help in the search for information. 

Elijah Harris was arrested Thursday but Dallas County District Attorney says warrants were issued in August after he was identified as the suspect. 

Harris made his first court appearance in Dallas County Circuit Court Thursday and a judge ordered him held in jail without bond.

His preliminary hearing has been set for December 21, 2015 at 9 am. 

“We just don't know why. Why him? He's been living here a long time. As a matter of fact, this is his mother's house. He's been living here over 30 something years and nobody ever messed with him,” Edmunds said. “We're still not taking it in that he's gone. He didn't deserve that. You couldn't ask for a better granddad.”

Copyright 2015 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Accused serial rapist and killer undetected working as cop

    Accused serial rapist and killer undetected working as cop

    Thursday, April 26 2018 2:39 AM EDT2018-04-26 06:39:08 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 11:24 AM EDT2018-04-26 15:24:10 GMT
    (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli). Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, left, talks to reporters about the arrest Joesph James DeAngelo, seen in photo, on suspicion of committing a string of violent crimes in the 1970's and 1980's after a news conference. ...(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli). Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, left, talks to reporters about the arrest Joesph James DeAngelo, seen in photo, on suspicion of committing a string of violent crimes in the 1970's and 1980's after a news conference. ...

    The suspected Golden State Killer became less prolific but deadlier after losing his job as a police officer.

    More >>

    The suspected Golden State Killer became less prolific but deadlier after losing his job as a police officer.

    More >>
  • Texas gang member executed for killing girl, grandmother

    Texas gang member executed for killing girl, grandmother

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 12:55 AM EDT2018-04-25 04:55:40 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 1:23 AM EDT2018-04-26 05:23:56 GMT
    (Texas Department of Criminal Justice via AP). This undated photo provided by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice shows Erick Davila. Attorneys for the Texas death row inmate want the U.S. Supreme Court to halt his scheduled execution this week fo...(Texas Department of Criminal Justice via AP). This undated photo provided by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice shows Erick Davila. Attorneys for the Texas death row inmate want the U.S. Supreme Court to halt his scheduled execution this week fo...
    Attorneys for a condemned Texas prisoner are asking the US Supreme Court to halt his execution for killing a young girl and her grandmother in 2008.More >>
    Attorneys for a condemned Texas prisoner are asking the US Supreme Court to halt his execution for killing a young girl and her grandmother in 2008.More >>
  • Drunken mom accused of letting kid drive, police say

    Drunken mom accused of letting kid drive, police say

    Thursday, April 26 2018 9:29 AM EDT2018-04-26 13:29:18 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 9:32 AM EDT2018-04-26 13:32:22 GMT

    Sheboygan County sheriff`s deputies arrived and pulled her over. Hauke denies her 12-year old daughter was in her lap, steering the car. Dashcam video shows she also was reluctant to speak with deputies.

    More >>

    Sheboygan County sheriff`s deputies arrived and pulled her over. Hauke denies her 12-year old daughter was in her lap, steering the car. Dashcam video shows she also was reluctant to speak with deputies.

    More >>
  • NewsMore>>

  • 1 arrested in connection to April 16 Holtville homicide

    1 arrested in connection to April 16 Holtville homicide

    Thursday, April 26 2018 11:26 AM EDT2018-04-26 15:26:27 GMT
    Ephram Brown (Source: Elmore County Sheriff's Office)Ephram Brown (Source: Elmore County Sheriff's Office)

    The Elmore County Sheriff's Office has arrested a suspect in connection to an April 16 homicide in Holtville.

    More >>

    The Elmore County Sheriff's Office has arrested a suspect in connection to an April 16 homicide in Holtville.

    More >>
  • Accused serial rapist and killer undetected working as cop

    Accused serial rapist and killer undetected working as cop

    Thursday, April 26 2018 2:39 AM EDT2018-04-26 06:39:08 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 11:24 AM EDT2018-04-26 15:24:10 GMT
    (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli). Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, left, talks to reporters about the arrest Joesph James DeAngelo, seen in photo, on suspicion of committing a string of violent crimes in the 1970's and 1980's after a news conference. ...(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli). Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, left, talks to reporters about the arrest Joesph James DeAngelo, seen in photo, on suspicion of committing a string of violent crimes in the 1970's and 1980's after a news conference. ...

    The suspected Golden State Killer became less prolific but deadlier after losing his job as a police officer.

    More >>

    The suspected Golden State Killer became less prolific but deadlier after losing his job as a police officer.

    More >>
  • Geologists say N. Korea's nuclear test site likely collapsed

    Geologists say N. Korea's nuclear test site likely collapsed

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 9:28 PM EDT2018-04-26 01:28:35 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 11:22 AM EDT2018-04-26 15:22:44 GMT
    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)
    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed.

    More >>

    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly