Homicide suspect pleads not guilty

A 22-year-old Merced man pleaded not guilty earlier this week to killing a teenager earlier this year.

Jerome Wynne was arrested last week in connection with the Feb. 17 shooting death of 16-year-old Donovan Webster in Merced.

Wynne entered his plea Tuesday in Merced Superior Court and denied street-gang and firearms enhancements in connection with the teen’s death. He is scheduled to appear in court again Monday, the court clerk’s office confirmed.

Merced police said Wynne was already in custody on an unrelated weapons charge when he was booked on the homicide charge. Investigators said the motive remains under investigation. The firearm used in the shooting has not been recovered.

Family members said Webster had been staying at a group home in Madera and showed up unexpectedly at his parents’ home around midnight Feb. 17. Webster left his parents’ home to visit his brother at a nearby friend’s house.

Officers said Webster was walking in the area of Martin Luther King Jr. Way and 20th Street when he was shot. Webster’s family members heard the gunshots and found him lying on the ground when they went to investigate. He was pronounced dead at an area hospital a short time later.