Teen charged in death of ‘watermelon man’

By , Daily Memphian Updated: June 15, 2023 6:00 PM CT | Published: May 31, 2023 3:43 PM CT

John Materna, 76, died on Monday, May 29, two weeks after he was shot during a May 15 robbery while selling watermelons at Homer Street and Wayne Avenue in The Heights neighborhood.


John Materna Memphis Police Department public safety
Julia Baker

Julia Baker

Julia Baker covers Memphis and Shelby County’s law enforcement agencies and is a member of The Daily Memphian’s public safety reporting team. A lifelong Memphian, Julia graduated from the University of Memphis in 2021. Other publications and organizations she has written for include Chalkbeat, Memphis Flyer, Memphis Parent magazine and Memphis magazine.


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