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3 charged with first-degree murder in Phil Trenary’s death

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Three people have been arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Memphis civic leader Phil Trenary, according to Memphis police.


McKinney Wright Jr., 22; Quandarius Richardson, 18; and Racanisha Wright, 16; have been charged with first-degree murder in perpetration of criminal attempted robbery and criminal attempted especially aggravated robbery, according to police.

The department has not said if police are searching for additional suspects. 

Richardson was charged earlier in the day following a police chase involving a vehicle that matched the description of one used in the homicide, but police had not said if the case was connected.

Richardson was booked into the jail around 4 a.m. Saturday. Jail records show McKinney Wright Jr. was booked just before 10:30 p.m. the same day. The third suspect, as a minor, would not be housed in the same jail. Police did not immediately respond to a message asking where Racanisha Wright was located.

The department announced the arrests on Twitter late Saturday night. 

Earlier in the day, the department announced Richardson was charged with theft of property with a value between $10,000 and $60,000, auto theft, reckless driving, reckless endangerment, driving without a license and evading arrest. An affidavit focused only on those charges said Richardson admitted to stealing the truck used in the police chase.

Affidavits have not yet been filed in the Shelby County Criminal Justice online system for the charges related to the homicide. Police did not indicate if the two suspects with the same last name are related. 

Another teen, Shymontre Reed, 19, was charged in connection with the police chase. Reed faces charges of theft of property with a value between $10,000 and $60,000, evading arrest, and a probation violation, according to jail records, but has not been tied to the homicide. 

Trenary was killed Thursday night on South Front Street after an event at Loflin Yard hosted by the Greater Memphis Chamber. He served as the chamber’s president and CEO and was previously the CEO of Pinnacle Airlines. He was 64 years old, a father, grandfather and a fierce advocate for his adopted city.

Police had not released any suspects’ names or possible motives for the shooting. The charges indicate the alleged motive was robbery. 

Officers were on scene in the 500 block of South Front just before 8 p.m. Thursday. 

The chamber held a four-mile run along the river, ending at Loflin Yard. 

Trenary didn’t run the race, according to race records and a witness who saw him walking around the outdoor bar in a suit. It’s unclear what time he left the bar, but he was shot less than half a mile away.

Police said a white truck pulled up next to Trenary and a man, who was originally described as having dreadlocks, exited the vehicle and shot him. Trenary was taken to Regional One Hospital but died that night. 

Trenary’s funeral is set for Thursday. 

This story will be updated.

Reach Jennifer Pignolet at [email protected] or on Twitter @JenPignolet. 

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