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Suspect offers possible motive in fatal shooting of Kentucky minor

Christopher Lawrence Cox, 37, of Panama City Beach, faces one count of murder and one count of...
Christopher Lawrence Cox, 37, of Panama City Beach, faces one count of murder and one count of attempted murder. (Source: Panama City Beach Police Department)(Panama City Beach Police Department)
Published: Mar. 24, 2021 at 4:48 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Police said they now have a motive in Tuesday morning’s shooting in Panama City Beach that left a Kentucky teen dead and his stepbrother injured.

According to an arrest affidavit, 37-year-old Christopher Cox confessed he shot both kids because they tried to steal his backpack.

ARREST AFFIDAVIT CLICK HERE

Beach Police said two Kentucky minors were on the beach when Cox approached them, allegedly shooting and killing one of the boys and injuring the other.

Cox reportedly told police in an interview, he kept a gun in his bag, and when the teens tried to grab it, he pulled the gun out, loaded it and began shooting them.

He also reportedly told police if they stole his bag, he would have lost his gun, which he was “not willing to do.”

Police said when they found Cox near the crime scene, he had blood on his pants.

The suspect made his first court appearance Wednesday afternoon. Bond was denied.

Cox is due back in court April 26th.

Copyright 2021 WJHG. All rights reserved.

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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - ORIGINAL STORY: March 23, 2021

Two step-brothers were shot overnight in Panama City Beach while on a vacation with their family. One of them died from his injuries.

Panama City Beach Police say they responded to a call at the Shores of Panama on South Thomas Drive in reference to a shooting beachside around 1:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Police say two juvenile males, from Louisville, Kentucky, between the ages of 12 and 16 were shot. They say one of the boys was found dead from gunshot wounds on the beach and the other was found at the complex with gunshot wounds to his extremities. That boy was taken to a local hospital where he was treated and released.

Officials say the two are stepbrothers and their parents are also in Panama City Beach.

The Panama City Beach Police Department has arrested the suspect, Christopher Lawrence Cox, 37, of Panama City Beach on charges of one open count of murder and one count of attempted murder.

“No one’s in danger,” he says, “We do have the suspect, we do have the weapon, and we’re treating this as a crime scene. We’ll go through this slowly to make sure we get justice for the family.”

PCBPD officers say they are still unsure of a motive.

Copyright 2021 WJHG. All rights reserved.