Kenneth Johnson and Ryan Loyd charged in Anthony Titus' July 4 homicide

Anthony Titus was hanging out in the alley behind a home on Fremont Avenue N. on the night of the Fourth of July when he was shot dead. His mother and friends told reporters that they were sure the boy wasn't in a gang, just a kid caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. Today, Minneapolis police have fleshed out the story of what they say happened that day.

Titus was indeed in the alley; he and his friends were "mean mugged" by a bunch of "Young and Thuggin" gang-bangers in a maroon Ford Expedition -- one of the guys hangining out with Titus was thought to have been in a rival gang.

Titus and his friends brushed off the words, but the guys in the SUV evidently circled back, and two of them -- Johnson and Lloyd -- got out and ran up to Titus and his friends with guns drawn.

"What's up now, li'll niggers," one of them shouted. Shots rang out. Titus died on the spot of a single gunshot wound.

Kenneth Johnson and Ryan Loyd have now been charged with four counts each of first-degree murder. Loyd is in custody at the Hennepin County jail. Johnson will shortly be transferred to the jail from the Hennepin County Juvenile Detention Center.

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