According to witnesses, Beard punched Tucker for unknown reasons and the boy ran to his home, just a few houses away, to tell his mother. When they returned to confront Beard, someone in a car allegedly screamed a derogatory term at Tucker’s mother, prompting the boy to chase the vehicle. Gunshots were fired and an unknown truck sped away. When the smoke cleared, Tucker was left bleeding to death in an alley with gunshot wounds to his head and thigh.
Neighbor Elizabeth Reeves, 47, ran to the alley after hearing Tucker’s mother’s scream, “My son! My son!” She discovered the young boy lying on the ground, with only his legs barely moving.
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Beard was released from the Indiana Department of Correction last September after serving about two years of a six-year sentence for unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious felon.
According to online DOC records, the Marion County conviction was for a Class B felony, just below the most serious Class A felony category.
Beard appears to have a long criminal record, including a 1985 knife fight over a motorcycle that left another man dead and Beard critically injured. Beard and several others later were indicted on reckless homicide and other charges.
Beard also was sentenced to prison terms in 1989 for B-felony dealing drugs and in 1993 for D-felony possession of marijuana.
Beard had left the shooting scene on Sunday night before officers arrived, said officer Kendale Adams, a spokesman for the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.
Tucker was transported to Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health, where he later died. Neighbors have already begun building a memorial for the boy 5 houses down from his home where he was shot.