Pieper, Veluz Case Suffers Setback
Posted by Childress on August 19, 2006
The violent death of Jeremy Henry may make it impossible to ever learn what led Pieper and Veluz so far from their homes at 5 a.m. the morning they were killed. Initial reports hinted that Pieper’s use of drugs might have been involved, but many friends and family members have written me saying it wsa just a case of “being in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
The comments I’ve received about Raymond have been particularly glowing, so no matter what it was that got these two in the wrong part of town at the crack of dawn, it’s a shame.
Here’s the update, from The St. Petersburg Times:
Jeremy Henry was a mystery in life: a man who could be vicious to enemies yet also bought ice cream for neighborhood children, according to friends.
And the 20-year-old, who was gunned down early Sunday on a Dade City dirt road, left a mystery in his death: What happened to him? And what might Henry – wanted for questioning in the July 28 shooting deaths of two Wesley Chapel teens – have been able to tell authorities?
The county Sheriff’s Office had little to say on the case Monday, aside from listing the items in Henry’s pockets when he died:
The key to a mobile home near where his body was found. Marijuana. Methamphetamine. And a .40-caliber semiautomatic handgun. …
Friends confirmed Henry stayed in the Dade City area, despite rumors he had fled the state.
But he was paranoid and not sleeping well.
“He was planning to turn himself in,” said his cousin, 24-year-old Bryan Wright. He said Henry was saving money, in anticipation of having to pay a jail bond, and a lawyer.
Henry has an extensive criminal history, dating to age 11. He was arrested most recently in March, charged with aggravated battery in a shooting that injured a Dade City man. The charges were dropped.
The Sheriff’s Office says he was the leader of a gang called Jeremy Henry’s Posse. Family members adamantly deny that.
“I know for a fact that this kid was no head of no gang, he was no part of no gang. He hung by himself,” said Catherine Wright, the aunt who raised him.
The Sheriff’s Office said Henry’s death is a setback in the investigation of who killed Derek Pieper, 17, and Raymond Veluz, 18, the Wesley Chapel teens found slain last month on a remote road in Trilby. Henry was never called a suspect but was wanted for questioning.
Pieper’s brother, Bryan, was unaffected by the news of Henry’s death: “I really don’t care. Sorry.”
Meth, marijuana, a gun, a cloud of suspicion and an early death. Jeremy Henry’s life may not have been a glamorous drug life, but it was a drug life.