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Man charged in deadly shooting of 16-year-old at Castleton Square Mall

Sixteen-year-old Michael Mason was killed in the shooting outside the mall Jan. 3.

INDIANAPOLIS — After two months, a man is being charged in a deadly shooting at Castleton Square Mall.

Clyde Johnson is charged with voluntary manslaughter, aggravated battery and battery by means of a deadly weapon. A warrant is out for his arrest.

According to court documents, Justin Johnson-Sparks and 16-year-old Michael Mason were at the mall on Jan. 3 and happened to walk to a car that looked the same as theirs and was in the same area they parked.

Johnson-Sparks told police he and Mason walked up to the wrong Chevy Impala and a man in the backseat opened fire, killing Mason. 

Credit: Family photo
Michael Mason, 16, was shot and killed outside Castleton Square Mall Tuesday night.

In court documents, Johnson-Sparks said he then ran, tripped and tried to hide in a bush. Johnson-Sparks said the shooter chased after him and shot him from about 8 to 10 feet away. Johnson-Sparks said he then pretended to be dead and the shooter returned to his car.

A witness confirmed seeing a man chasing after another man and shooting him.

Johnson told police he was looking at his phone when he spotted two men walking up to his car on each side. According to court documents, Johnson said he thought he was about to be robbed, so he grabbed his gun and shot at Mason, who was on the passenger side. 

Johnson then allegedly said he chased after the other man and only shot at him once. Investigators claim Johnson told them he was "chasing him to make sure he didn't go anywhere because I knew the cops were coming" and "I went to find him…They can't get away. If I was to let them get away, they would return and finish me off."

Johnson also told police he was concerned because he was a witness in another homicide, according to court documents. Johnson did stay on the scene until police arrived.

"To say that we’re upset, hurt, all understatements," said Eddie Smith, Justin Johnson-Sparks' father. "We are just trying to put the pieces together and only our faith is going to sustain us – our Faith in God because no faith in justice or anything else."

"I just have no faith in the justice system at all," said Leslie Smith, Justin's mother. "Why wasn't the higher charges (brought) and then, let them go back and forth and negotiate on what the charges would actually be? You start lower and then, how much time will he really serve for taking a 16-year-old boy's life?" Leslie Smith said.

A special prosecutor was assigned to the case to determine what, if any, charges Johnson would face.

"It's just been a horrible situation all the way around and again, my family and I are left to pick the pieces up behind," Eddie Smith said.

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