Suspect in Mobile, Ala., Beating Had Ongoing Feud With Victim
The suspect, Terry Rawls, 44, has a lengthy criminal record, including convictions for assault, burglary, theft and firing a weapon into a building or vehicle, according to the Mobile Press-Register. Police said more arrests are possible.
Local officials appear to be attempting to tamp down speculation that the attack on Matthew Owens was some form of retaliation for the killing of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed African-American teen who was shot by a neighborhood watch volunteer in Sanford, Fla., in February.
Chad Tucker, a spokesman for the Mobile district attorney, said that Owens and Rawls have a history of conflict dating to the summer of 2009. “That’s an important fact that needs to get out to the public,” Tucker said. “This was not some random event that came out of nowhere.”