LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala. - Twenty-two year old Dacedric Ward pleaded not guilty to two capital murder charges in a Limestone County Courtroom on Wednesday morning. Ward is accused of shooting and killing 18-year-old Jason West on December 26, 2016 at the Sonic on County Line Road.
"When I close my eyes, I think of the last time I saw him," Jennifer Mack, Jason's aunt, said. "He was carrying a skateboard. I was supposed to come back two days later and take him to graduation lunch. That's what I think of. How sweet he was."
The case involving the death of her nephew is moving forward. Ward faces two charges: capital murder-robbery and capital murder-shooting from an occupied vehicle. Nineteen-year-old Trevor Cantrell faces the same charges.
"I know that it's going to be a long, drawn out process but I'm really grateful that it's begun," Mack said. "I'm grateful to all the men and women for working so hard on the investigation."
Police said 18-year-old West believed he was purchasing Xanax from Ward and Cantrell before Cantrell and Ward robbed him. Authorities said Cantrell told them Ward pulled the trigger.
"When I see them it's just impossible for me to imagine I'm standing so close to two people who could do such a thing to such a sweet, sweet young man," Mack said of seeing the accused.
West's family members band together to get through the heartache, believing justice is being served.
"The fact that it's such a long process kind of prevents closure but I know that's the way justice moves," Mack said. "That's how we can be sure that justice is done. But, we're just really glad that things are moving along now."
Ward's trial is scheduled for December 11. Cantrell applied for youthful offender status earlier this month. His next court date is set for August 3.