Teen claims self-defense in deadly York City shooting

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Bernard Simmons III

YORK CITY, Pa.–A teenager was arrested Tuesday in connection with the shooting death of 50-year-old Craig Henise in York City.

Bernard Howard Simmons III, 16, is charged with criminal homicide and firearms not to be carried without a license. He was arraigned Tuesday and taken to York County Prison without bail.

Officers responded to the area of West Newton Avenue and Neater Street in York City on Monday night for a reported shooting. Police found Henise on the ground with a gunshot wound to his leg. He was taken to York Hospital and later died.

Surveillance footage obtained near the shooting scene shows Henise talking with two males on the corner of W. Newton and Neater Street prior to being shot, according to the criminal complaint. They appear to talk between 15 to 20 minutes before walking away and disappearing from the camera.

Investigators spoke with a witness who said he saw two teen boys running from the shooting scene, according to court documents.

On Thursday, officers talked to a witness at the school where Simmons attends. The witness told police that Simmons said he shot someone last night in an alley near his house. Simmons lives along the 400 block of Salem Avenue, which is about 100 yards from where the shooting happened, according to court documents. The witness said Simmons asked how much time he thought he could get for the shooting.

Police took Simmons into custody at the school he attends and interviewed him in the presence of his mother at the York City Police Department.

Bernard confessed to shooting Henise on Monday night, according to the criminal complaint. Simmons told police he saw a gun in Henise’s waist band and shot him in self defense. After shooting Henise, Simmons said he gave the gun to a friend.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for April 18.