The man initially charged with manslaughter in the shooting death of a 20-year-old woman last year is now charged with second-degree murder.
Charges were upgraded Tuesday for Frederick Wade, who learned of the new charge during a pretrial hearing in the killing of Kalil McCoy.
The upgraded charge is not because of any new developments or evidence in the case, but because the original prosecutor, Sam Garrison, filed a manslaughter charge, and the prosecutor who took over the case after him, Joel Powell, felt a second-degree murder charge was more appropriate.
The murder charge carries a sentence of 25 years to life in prison, if convicted.
Now, a third prosecutor is taking over the case, as Powell is leaving the state attorney's office.
Police said Wade admitted to handling a gun when it discharged during a struggle in a SUV in June, killing McCoy. The two of them and three others had left a nightclub in the SUV.
Two of those suspects, Kennard Mahone and Jonathan Brooks, have pleaded guilty to being accessories after the fact after they admitted they helped dispose of McCoy's body.
Both are expected to testify against Wade.
Alfred Mears, the third man charged as an accessory, is still going through the pretrial process.
Wade's trial is set for the end of February.
McCoy and the four suspects were classmates at Andrew Jackson High School, where McCoy graduated from weeks before her death.
Lynnette Roebuck, McCoy's mother, said she's happy with the new charge, although she said she feels it should be a first-degree murder charge.
She said the pain and heartache of her daughter's death never goes away.
"This is my reality," Roebuck said. "I've got to live without my daughter. I have twins, but I've got to look at one half."
"I just don't want him to ever get out of prison. That's just how I feel," Roebuck said of the suspect in her daughter's killing. "I don't want him to ever see daylight because my daughter can never see daylight anymore."
McCoy's sister and twin brother recently joined the organization Jacksonville Youth Works to try to help put troubled teens back on the right track.
"I just don't want someone else to have to go through the feelings and the mixed emotions and the up and downs that I'm going through right now," said Shardae McCoy, Kalil's sister.
Kalil would have turned 21 this past New Year's Eve.
"She didn't deserve to die, and then the way she died, it's all going to come out in the trial," Roebuck said. "Some surprises are going to come out in the trial."