Mississippi teen charged with murder in shooting of 11-year-old that officials thought was accidental

Published 5:12 am Thursday, June 10, 2021

A Mississippi teen has been charged with murder in the shooting of an 11-year-old male that officials first thought was accidental.

Thomas Hardman, 14 of Vicksburg, has been charged with Second Degree Murder. The Vicksburg Police Department identified the victim as 11-year-old Rashawn Wilbert.

Hardman appeared before Judge Allen Derivaux in Vicksburg Municipal Court on June 9, where his bond was set at $150,000 and he was bound over to the Warren County Grand Jury.

Although Hardman is a minor, he is being charged as an adult.

“There is no juvenile second-degree murder in Mississippi,” Vicksburg Police Department Capt. Mike Bryant said.

Bryant confirmed that Hardman and the victim were cousins and that two other family members were present at the time of the shooting.

At 7:56 p.m. on June 8, officers of VPD and personnel from the Vicksburg Fire Department were dispatched to an address on Elizabeth Circle for shooting. Inside the residence, they found an 11-year-old male suffering from a gunshot wound to his chest. He was later pronounced dead at the scene.

At the time, it appeared that the shooting was accidental, a statement from VPD said.