SHELBY, N.C. -- Aaron Byers and Hannah Bickley may have felt like they were destined to be together.
Teen accused of killing Shelby girlfriend has criminal past
She just fell in love with the wrong guy, said Guy Bickley, her father.
He is mourning the loss of his 17-year-old daughter, who lost her life at the hands of her 19-year-old boyfriend. She was shot during a botched robbery attempt in Shelby.
She just fell in his trap it was like he had a hold of her.
Byers had a criminal record; he was arrested for 15 burglaries dating back to 2012.
He confessed and also gave information that implicated his co-defendants, said Cleveland County District Attorney Rick Schaffer.
His office negotiated a plea deal with Byers that let him out of jail for time served, which was about 60 days.
Byers, was an alleged gang member, but his record prior to the burglaries was not very hardcore. His previous charges were unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and disorderly conduct.
The judge entered a judgment consistent with what this type of case would usually involve, said Schaffer.
The teen had something prosecutors wanted, information on his fellow gang members.
At that time there was a gang problem escalating in this particular district so it was valuable to have that information and help remove some of those folks.
Schaffer says part of the reason folks like Byers end up back on the streets is because the legislature has not made burglary a serious enough crime.
You want them to get a lot of time, then the statute has to provide for it and the folks have to give us the resources to do it, and we'll do it, he said.
That is of little comfort to Bickley s family, which tried to get her to stop seeing him.
We were hoping that he did get the jail time and that would split them up long enough to where it would put a wedge between them, but it didn't happen, said her father.
Now the family can only ask why the system failed them.
Funeral services for the Cherryville High School senior will be held Thurdsday at 2 p.m. at Bethlehem Baptist Church. Visitation is scheduled for 8 p.m. Wednesday at Harris Funeral Home.
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