Murder charges say teen shot driver in St. Paul at random; he's charged as an adult


Star Tribune file

Yuliya "Julia" Li was driving home from a St. Paul grocery store on Feb. 16, 2022, when she was fatally shot.

Murder charges in adult court have been filed against a boy who was 15 years old when he drove behind a motorist heading home from a St. Paul grocery store and allegedly shot her in the head at random.

Melvin D. Williams, now 16, was certified Monday in Ramsey County District Court for prosecution as an adult on charges of second-degree intentional and drive-by murder in connection with the shooting of 34-year-old Yuliya "Julia" Li on Feb. 16, 2022.

Williams, of St. Paul, was arrested soon after the shooting and charged initially by what is called a juvenile petition. A murder conviction in adult court would mean a far more severe sentence for Williams than what he would have received being found guilty in juvenile court.


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