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Two charged with murder in Oakland shooting where second victim ran and hopped a fence to avoid gunfire

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Two charged with murder in Oakland shooting where second victim ran and hopped a fence to avoid gunfire

OAKLAND — Two 18-year-olds have been charged with murder and attempted murder in a Jan. 21 shooting outside a local fast food restaurant, where a man in his 20s was killed and a 19-year-old woman ran and hopped a fence to avoid being fatally shot, court records show.

The suspects have been identified as Jamal Watts, of Oakland, and Juliese Lawson, of Pacheco, who are both charged with murdering 28-year-old Kenyetta Chapman, of Brentwood, and attempting to murder the young woman, who was wounded but survived. Watts is in Santa Rita Jail with an arraignment set for mid-April, while Lawson has not been arrested and is considered a fugitive, police said.

Chapman was shot and killed around 8:30 a.m. on Jan. 21. Police say he and the woman were asleep in a car parked outside a fast food restaurant on the 2400 block of East 24th Street in Oakland, when a man came up, knocked on the window, returned to his own vehicle, then opened fire on Chapman and the woman. Both were struck by gunfire, but the woman was able to run away and hop a fence to avoid being killed.

The police investigation identified Lawson as the shooter. Authorities allege he knocked on the car window, and that when he returned to his own car Watts handed him the shotgun.

Nine days after the shooting, Watts was questioned by Oakland police as a person of interest in an armed robbery. In that incident, the victim was accosted by two men who demanded valuables. One of them shot the victim, but he was saved by something of a miracle; gardening clippers he had in a shirt pocket blocked a bullet that would have hit him in the chest, police say. Watts was questioned that same night, but police didn’t arrest him.

Chapman’s funeral was held in February at a Richmond church. His eulogy describes him as an ambitious family man known for his “sweetness, intelligence, caring nature, and striking handsomeness,” who worked two jobs to support his family, including two sons.



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