After Charges Dropped in Inglewood Slayings, Onetime Suspect Maintains Innocence
INGLEWOOD (CBSLA.com) — A 19-year-old Compton man held in the homicides of his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend’s grandmother has spoken out for the first time in the wake of his release.
The district attorney’s office Tuesday dropped murder charges against Justin Scott in the Oct. 8 Inglewood shooting deaths of Crystallyn Nguyen, 18, and Dora Dawson, 64, following the discovery of security videos that appear to support his alibi.
Scott, held in custody since Oct. 9, professed his innocence at a press conference Wednesday and said he shared his whereabouts with police at the start of the investigation.
“I repeatedly told them where I was. Where every step that I was that whole day,” Scott said (sic).
The teenager’s mother, Netta Williams, told CBS2/KCAL9’s Jeff Nguyen that officers threatened her at her home on the day of her son’s arrest. Williams also said she was forced to tap into her savings and to take a loan against her home to pay about $40,000 of Scott’s legal fees. She plans to sue the Inglewood Police Department.
“They had guns pointed at my head. They had lasers on my forehead. Lasers on my chest,” she said.
Scott’s release came after his defense attorney, Juliette Robinson, uncovered security video from three businesses in Compton that appear to show the teenager on camera around the time of the Inglewood shootings. Robinson has maintained her client’s innocence.
“There’s a CVS video. That there’s a Smoke 4 Less video. That there’s a China Express video,” Robinson said.
In the wake of the video discovery, Inglewood police say they will start their investigation from scratch and plan to re-interview the witnesses who identified Scott as the shooter.
“From the police department’s standpoint, we’re still actively investigating the case,” Inglewood Police Department Lt. Gabriela Garcia said.
The victims’ families were notified of Scott’s release and told CBS2/KCAL9 that they are still convinced Justin Scott is responsible for Nguyen and Dawson’s deaths.
Dawson’s grandson Datwan Henderson, who was Nguyen’s boyfriend at the time of her death, was one of the witnesses who told police Scott was the shooter. He was wounded during the shooting and remains in the hospital.
Scott says he hasn’t heard from the Police Department since his release, but he does have a message for the victims’ families.
“I give my condolences to that family as well. I feel their pain,” he said.