Charges: Man was shot in the back while in car in St. Paul

·2 min read

Authorities arrested a suspect in the death of a 28-year-old Brooklyn Park man who was shot in the back at close range earlier this summer in St. Paul.

Jalan Wells, 21, of Chicago, was arrested last week in connection with the July 26 killing of Devonte Ingram while he was in a vehicle in the 1700 block of St. Clair Avenue, police said.

An arrest warrant was issued last month when Wells was charged in Ramsey County District Court with two counts of second-degree murder. Wells remains jailed in lieu of $2 million bail. Wells does not yet have an attorney assigned to him by the public defender's office.

Police say they continue their search for a 22-year-old accomplice who they believe pulled the trigger in the shooting.

According to the criminal complaint:

Officers arrived at the scene about 1:30 p.m. and saw Ingram facedown in the driver's seat. A gun was retrieved from one of his pockets.

A loud popping sound prompted a witness nearby to start a video on his phone, and it showed a man grabbing a backpack and running from the scene. It also showed a man exiting the passenger side of the car and running.

Another witness said she heard a loud noise, looked out her apartment window and saw the driver and passenger struggling in the car.

"The man in the passenger seat had a gun and was punching the driver while they struggled," the charges read. "The passenger put the gun to the driver's back and fired once or twice."

Ingram's girlfriend told police that he left West St. Paul in her car earlier that day to meet a marijuana buyer and took his backpack, a baggie of the drug and a gun.

A police search of an apartment near the shooting turned up a sweatshirt worn by Wells' accomplice, who also is from Illinois, and a T-shirt belonging to Wells. Police also recovered cellphones belonging Wells and to the accomplice from inside the car where Ingram was shot.

Wells' phone held text messages with Ingram about making a marijuana deal.

"This case is as complex as it is tragic ... but our work is not finished," Police Chief Todd Axtell said in a statement. "We know there's another suspect out there, running and hiding. And I know we won't stop until he's found. Because that's what the victim, his family and our community expect and deserve."

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

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