Not guilty plea entered for Barling teenager charged with murder, other felonies; trial dates set for October

FORT SMITH — A 15-year-old boy pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges in Sebastian County Circuit Court Wednesday after police arrested him last week.

Kemuel Stucki of Barling appeared in person during his arraignment before Circuit Judge Stephen Tabor. A public defender was appointed to represent Stucki, who entered not guilty pleas on his behalf. His total bail remained at $1.25 million cash only between his two sets of charges.

Stucki was charged as an adult Friday with first-degree murder, aggravated robbery and terroristic act in connection with an apparent robbery March 24 in which Chanell Moore, 26, was shot and killed, according to a news release from Dan Shue, county prosecuting attorney.

Stucki was charged with another count of aggravated robbery in connection with a separate incident Dec. 12 in Barling.

First-degree murder and aggravated robbery are class Y felonies. Stucki’s terroristic act charge is a class B felony.

The case for the March 24 charges was set for jury trial the week of Oct. 2 before Tabor in the Fort Smith District of Sebastian County during Stucki’s arraignment, according to another news release from Shue. The case for the Dec. 12 charge was set for trial Oct. 23 before Circuit Judge Gunner DeLay in the Greenwood District.

The Fort Smith Police Department announced Stucki’s arrest and provided details of its investigation into Moore’s death during a news conference Friday.

Chief Danny Baker said police arrested Stucki during a SWAT operation Thursday in the 9800 block of Mayo Drive after getting an arrest warrant for the Dec. 12 aggravated robbery, as well as a search warrant.

Stucki’s arrest affidavit for the incident asserts Stucki entered the ALON gas station at 1709 Fort St. in Barling at about 7:40 p.m. Dec. 12 wearing a black ski mask. He placed a sports bag on the counter and demanded the clerk fill it with vape pens while signaling he had a weapon. The clerk could see the outline of a handgun through Stucki’s gray hoodie, the affidavit states.

Another customer entered the store while the clerk was gathering the vape pens, the affidavit states. Stucki appeared to get “spooked” and walked out, heading around to its west side. After contacting police dispatch, the clerk and the other customer followed Stucki, who agreed to come in and pay for the vape pens. However, once back inside, Stucki grabbed four vape pens and left the scene without paying for them, according to the affidavit.

Although Barling police didn’t make contact with Stucki at the time, they recovered the bag, mask, gloves and handgun he left on the west side of the gas station the following day, the affidavit states.

Baker said police received a tip in April via Facebook about the Barling robbery while investigating the robbery in which Moore was killed. Detectives were able to positively identify Stucki in video from the ALON gas station, according to the affidavit. Authorities also traced the gun found at the scene and determined Stucki’s father bought it in 2015.

Fort Smith police interviewed Stucki Thursday after serving him an arrest warrant for the Barling robbery, according to Stucki’s arrest affidavit for the March 24 robbery. The affidavit asserts Stucki entered another convenience store — identified by police as Doug’s Eastside Convenience at 9017 Rogers Ave. in Fort Smith — while wearing a mask and demanded vape pens. Despite her compliance, Stucki shot Moore six times, killing her, the affidavit states.

Stucki grabbed some cigarettes and vape pens before fleeing the scene, during which he fired at a car in the parking lot, according to the affidavit. The bullet came close to hitting the vehicle’s female occupant in the head, the affidavit states.

Police found a handgun when executing a search warrant at Stucki’s home that was the same caliber of firearm used on Moore and matched the appearance of the murder weapon appearing in surveillance video of Doug’s Eastside Convenience.

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