Jonathan Roger Tripp
17 Years Old

March 15, 1977 to June 12, 1994

Jonathan Roger Tripp, of Kennesaw, Georgia, was the type of person who made friends for life, both male and female. Other teenagers were constantly in and out of our house to eat, sleep, play with his band in the basement, or play with his Nintendo or Sega Genesis games. Because of him, our house was full of laughter and noise.

Jonathan was a hard worker and had just recently started working at the Dallas Little Caesar's store. This was to be his last day, since he was going to a better job.

Jonathan had a lot of interests and abilities. He was an excellent drummer, and his band played at the last North Cobb High School talent show. Although his favorite music was heavy metal, before his death he had been playing in a Christian band with his cousin. They played mostly for youth groups at Church. At Awtrey Middle School he played the French Horn in the band. His mother taught him to play the piano when he was younger, and he played the violin for several years. He had also taken gymnastics and karate and was excellent with computers.

We had such hopes and dreams for Jonathan. He was a talented, intelligent, hard working, easy-going, well-liked young man with a lot of good friends. He was looking forward to a bright future. He would have started his senior year of high school in August 1994, and he would have graduated in June, 1995. After high school he planned to go to vocational school to study computers.

Jonathan spent his last morning at Shiloh Hills Baptist Church with his family. He was born again in 1983, and was baptized on Mother's Day, 1983.

Although Jonathan was very tall and thin, he loved to eat. One of his favorite foods was shrimp. Roger and Judy Tripp of Kennesaw are his parents and Alicia Tripp Bundrum his only sibling.

CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE MURDER

At 10:00 pm on June 12, 1994, Jonathan Tripp, who had just turned 17, was closing up at his part-time job at Little Caesar's Pizza on Dallas Highway in Cobb County, Georgia. Three teenagers, with the intention of robbing the store, shot Jonathan in the face with a pistol-grip shotgun when he opened the back door.

While Jonathan was working hard to get money to fix his car, pay his insurance, and buy gasoline, John Tomlinson, Jeremy Prater, and Eric Thomas conspired and tried to carry out a robbery at closing time to finance a trip to Florida. Jonathan would have given them anything in the store. They didn't have to shoot him like an animal.

According to the Cobb County Police Department, Jeremy Prater slept with a loaded gun in his bedroom and his house was filled with guns. One of these was the weapon used to kill Jonathan and wound another 17-year-old, Kyle Parenteau. Jeremy Prater's older brother was already in jail for murdering his girlfriend. Josh Tomlinson and Jeremy Prater went to the door, while Eric Thomas drove the get away car around waiting to pick them up. After the murder, Josh and Jeremy fled to Florida, where they stayed until Josh's parents convinced him to come back.

These three young men never admitted their guilt to the authorities, even though there were eight young people present at Eric Thomas's house when they made their plans, and they admitted that they had done it to several friends afterwards. Neither of the three showed any emotion or remorse before, during, or after the trial. Josh Tomlinson and Jeremy Prater were convicted of murder and aggravated assault and sentenced to life plus 15 years. Eric Thomas was convicted of murder and sentenced to life. We were told that they will be out in 10 years or less.

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Jonathan Tripp