• An Atlanta stepfather allegedly shot his stepson after the two got into a fight over the shelter-in-place order for the coronavirus pandemic
  • The stepson had reportedly gone out earlier in the day against his parents wishes before returning home and initiating the fight
  • The stepfather was booked at the Fulton County Jail and is facing one count of felony murder

Atlanta police arrested a stepfather Thursday for allegedly killing his stepson after an argument about coronavirus and the state’s shelter-in-place order.

Bernie Hargrove, 42, was arrested at the family’s home on a single charge of felony murder. He was booked at the Fulton County Jail.

Police said the shooting occurred Wednesday night at the family’s home in the Sylvan Hills district of Atlanta. De’onte Roberts, 16, reportedly went out when his mother and Hargrove told him he couldn’t due to the state’s stay-at-home order. This led to an alleged fight between Roberts and his parents when the former returned home.

“Later, the victim returned to the home and kicked in the door to the house where a physical fight began between the suspect and the victim,” police spokesman Steve Avery said in a statement. “During that altercation, the victim was shot.”

Roberts’ younger siblings were home when the shooting occurred.

Roberts was shot multiple times in the chest and rushed to Grady Memorial Hospital for treatment. He was pronounced dead from his wounds shortly after arriving.

“Tensions get high because you're in the same space, day in and day out,” Atlanta Police Capt. D’Andrea Price told reporters. “However, when the pressure gets high, you just have to take a deep breath and you have to separate.”

Police Scene
Representational image of a crime scene. Suzanne Cordiero/AFP/Getty Images