Friday, December 9, 2005

16-year-old arrested and charged with Mansfield's murder

A 16-year-old Maplewood High School student was arrested and charged with the murder of Eric Scott Mansfield.

Dionvelt Miller, a 10th grader at Maplewood, was arrested by Metro Police today (Dec. 7) after a tip from CrimeStoppers led to his arrest. Miller has a detention hearing in Juvenile Court on Dec. 9 at 2:30 p.m. He was arrested without incident at his home at 2160 Rock City Street. He is charged with criminal homicide, aggravated robbery and two counts of unlawful weapon possession.

Mansfield, 33, was fatally wounded while behind the wheel of his silver Volkswagen Jetta at Chapel and Greenwood Avenues on Friday, Nov. 11. Mansfield drove a short distance before pulling to the side of Chapel Avenue between Douglas and McKennie Avenues. He suffered a gunshot wound to the chest and was found unresponsive by his partner, O&AN staff writer David Miller.

In his statement to detectives, Miller said that he intended to rob Mansfield and take his car. Miller said that when Mansfield stopped at the intersection, he walked into the street in front of the Volkswagen with pistol in hand. Miller said Mansfield accelerated in an effort to get away. Miller fired a shot. Mansfield drove a short distance before pulling to the side of Chapel Avenue between Douglas and McKennie Avenues.

"Detective Bill Stewart and his colleagues at the East Precinct did an excellent job in corroborating the information provided by the Crime Stoppers caller and advancing this case to the point of an arrest," Chief Ronal Serpas said.

Miller also admitted that he was the gunman in a carjacking that took place minutes after Mansfield was shot. Cesar Navarro, 31, was robbed of his 1999 Chevrolet Suburban as he and a friend sat listening to the radio in the 1500 block of Cahal Avenue. The aggravated robbery charge and the second unlawful weapon possession charge against Miller stem from the Navarro incident.

A $27,000 reward was offered through CrimeStoppers for the arrest and conviction of Mansfield’s murderer. Warner Brother Records ($25,000), Out & About Newspaper ($1,000) and CrimeStoppers ($1,000) each contributed to the reward money.

“We have Miller in custody and he will be charged with the murder of Eric Scott Mansfield,” said Don Aaron, police spokesperson. “It appears the motive was robbery – he (Miller) needed money.”
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