PATERSON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Authorities have charged three men with killing a northern New Jersey teen who was gunned down hours after his high school graduation.
According to authorities, 18-year-old Isaac Rinas of Wayne was in a dangerous section of Paterson to buy a gun with his friend Casey Cole. But authorities said they are unsure why Rinas was out buying a gun.
“No, everybody seems to have liked him,” Capt. Eddie Rodriguez with the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office told reporters, including WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond.
Authorities say Cole conspired with 24-year-old Bishma Cowan and 27-year-old Quashon Faircloth to set up Rinas for a robbery.
According to authorities, Cole set up the robbery because he allegedly owed a drug dealer money, CBS 2’s Steve Langford reported.
Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia Valdes said Rinas handed over $350, stepped out of his car and was shot in the neck by Faircloth.
“We don’t believe that that was part of the plan. The plan was to have him robbed, and in the course of that plan, he was shot,” said Valdes. “Rinas opens the driver’s side door to exit and Faircloth fires one round, which strikes Rinas in the neck and fatally wounds him.”
According to Rinas’ online obituary, the 18-year-old who had just graduated high school told his mother that day “Now I can live my life,” but died just a few hours later.
Cole is a former Wayne Valley High School classmate of Rinas. He was charged with felony murder, robbery and conspiracy to commit a robbery.
Faircloth was charged with murder, felony murder, robbery and weapons offenses. Cowan was also charged with felony murder and robbery.
The charges were announced on the same day as family and friends turned out for the funeral for the popular teen.
At the service Tuesday, Rinas was remembered not for his death but for who he was in life.
“He was sweet. He would’ve helped anyone out if they needed. He was great,” a friend told Langford.
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