Teen indicted as adult in Valdosta murder case

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Jul. 29—VALDOSTA — A Valdosta teen has been indicted in the death of a 12-year-old following a crime spree, according to authorities.

Jaden Stephan McCutchin, 17, was indicted on charges of murder in the second degree and cruelty to children in the second degree by the Lowndes County Grand Jury, according to an indictment list released Friday.

McCutchin is being tried as an adult, said Brad Shealy, district attorney for the Southern Judicial Circuit.

At about 9 a.m. Tuesday, May 3, Valdosta police officers and detectives responded to a 911 call that a person had been shot at a 1000 block North Lee Street residence, according to a police statement released at the time.

"When officers arrived on the scene, they located a 12-year-old male inside a residence, with a gunshot wound to his head," police said. "Emergency Medical Services arrived on the scene and transported the victim to South Georgia Medical Center, where he was later pronounced deceased."

Police investigators determined that the 12-year-old and a 16-year-old had broken into several vehicles during the previous night. They stole several firearms from the vehicles, police said.

"They returned to the 16-year-old's residence, where they were in a bedroom playing with a couple of the stolen handguns," the statement said. "The gun the 16-year-old was holding discharged, shooting the victim in the head."

Police said investigators recovered six firearms from the residence; five were confirmed stolen.

Terry Richards is senior reporter at The Valdosta Daily Times.