Defense attorney believes teen robber who survived coach's gunfire should be charged with robbery

DETROIT (WXYZ) - "It appears to be self-defense," says attorney Terry Johnson of the 70-year-old basketball coach who shot two teenagers as they attempted to rob him. "People are tired of criminals taking over our streets. We need to be able to protect ourselves".

On Tuesday, Detroit Police presented prosecutors with a warrant request for possible charges against the coach.

One of the teens who police say tried to rob the coach in the parking lot of Martin Luther King Jr. High School Friday night was 16-year-old Michael Scott. Scott was killed when the coach opened fire on him and his 15-year-old alleged accomplice.

The 15-year-old was also struck by gunfire. He survived and was hospitalized. But will he now face charges stemming from the attempted robbery of the coach?

Police won't say if they ever recovered a gun from either teen, but it appears the coach believed they were armed when they tried to rob him as he walked two female students out to a car in the parking lot.

Johnson believes the teen should be charged, saying it does not matter if they were threatening the coach with a real gun but rather if the threat was perceived to be real.

Police say the teens "announced a holdup" and grabbed the coach by his chain necklace and stuck something in his chest. The girls ran as the 70-year-old coach, who is also a reserve police officer, struggled with the teens.

A source tells 7 Action News that on surveillance video, the coach is seen struggling with the teens and then when he is able to get some distance between himself and them, he pulls out his gun and fires, striking both of them.

Scott was killed.

While prosecutors say they are reviewing the case as it relates to the shooting, they say police have not presented them with a warrant request for possible charges against the teen who survived his gunshot injury.

Late Wednesday, a spokesperson for DPD would only tell 7 Action News that they are not releasing any details.

Both teens have had prior contact with police.

Scott was awaiting trial on an armed robbery case when he died.

The 15-year-old who survived has been arrested several times. When he was just thirteen, he was arrested for bringing a rifle onto the property of Detroit's Brenda Scott Middle School. He's also been arrested for fleeing and eluding police as well as carrying a concealed weapon.

It's unclear how those cases were resolved. Prosecutors will not comment on the disposition of the cases because he is a juvenile.

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