Isaac Bugyendu was already dead when police responded to a shooting call Sunday night on Montana Avenue in Cedar Crest. The 25-year-old's body, pierced by multiple bullets, had been left in the middle of the road, barely a block from the Illinois Avenue 7-Eleven where he was a clerk.
Notably absent from the crime scene was Bugyendu's 2002 Chevy Cavalier, which he'd driven to work but was now missing. Find the car, police figured, and they'd find the killer.
It didn't take long.
At 10:30 Monday morning, just 12 hours after police recovered Bugyendu's body, police officers spotted the Cavalier driving nearby. Four men were inside. Devontae Webb, 17, was driving. His three passengers were Actavione Buckley, 21, Deon White, 18, and Kendrick Mathis, 18.
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Mathis was the one who confessed their scheme, according to an arrest affidavit. He told officers he approached Bugyendu just as he was leaving work and asked for a ride for the four of them.
The plan was simply to rob him and steal his car, but that's not quite how things ended up. Just after they turned onto Montana Avenue, Mathis says that Webb pulled out a gun and told Bugyendu to pull over. Webb shot Bugyendu twice as he was getting out of the car. Webb shot him again for good measure as he lay on the ground, dying, before hopping in the driver's seat.
Buckley had a slightly different story. He told officers that Mathis, and not Webb, had shot Bugyendu after the clerk refused to cooperate during the robbery. Webb, naturally, had a different story. It was Buckley who pulled the trigger, not him or Mathis. White sided with Buckley, and said Mathis had fired the shots.
That debate is somewhat academic at this point. All four men are charged with capital murder.