NEW BEDFORD (CBS) – Two teenagers have been arrested in connection with the murder of a Vietnam veteran in New Bedford last weekend.
Donald DePina, 66, was driving a cab Saturday night when he was found shot in the parking lot at Brooklawn Park around 11 p.m.
He was rushed to St. Luke’s Hospital, where died about an hour later.
Two teens, a 16-year-old and 18-year-old Alexander Mills of New Bedford, were arrested Monday night, according to Bristol County District Attorney Tom Quinn.
Mills tried to cover his face in court Tuesday as prosecutors detailed the crime.
They drove to a park, where police say Mills shot DePina twice in the head, then dumped the body and took the cab which was equipped with a video camera. “The defendant is actually seen on video operating the vehicle subsequent to the death,” said prosecutor Patrick Bomberg.
“This was a brutal murder of an innocent man,” said Bristol County District Attorney Tom Quinn.
But in court, a psychiatrist testified that while Mills knew what was going on, he had issues. “He states he hears voices, that these voices tell him disparaging things about himself and also occasionally to harm people,” said Dr. Ruth Saemann.
Sources indicate that Mills was recently in the custody of the Department of Youth Services.
DePina’s family has set up a GoFundMe page to help raise money to pay for his funeral and burial.
“Donald DePina was an unconditionally loving and devoted father, grandfather and uncle who was selfishly taken from his family far too soon,” his family said in a message on the page.
“This tragedy occurred while he was driving his cab, a job he loved. He was an extremely proud Vietnam Veteran who was dedicated to helping other veterans of all eras. He was the former Director of Veterans’ Services for the City of New Bedford. The entire community will suffer from (his) loss, especially his immediate family.”