A York City teen will argue self-defense in last month's fatal shooting of a second teen during a confrontation in the parking lot of a fast-food restaurant.

District Judge Barbara Nixon advanced charges against 16-year-old Flair Lamont Griggs after a contentious 13-minute preliminary hearing Wednesday morning.

Griggs, of 810 W. King St., allegedly shot 17-year-old Joseph A. Gomez Jr. six times outside McDonald's, 142 S. George St., around 1 p.m. April 13.

Charged as an adult, he's being held in York County Prison without bail.

Griggs is facing charges of homicide and possession of a firearm by a minor. A charge of possession of a firearm without a license was added at Wednesday's hearing, during which defense attorney Bill Graff unsuccessfully pushed for the judge to advance a lesser charge of manslaughter, saying his client acted in self-defense.


Graff and senior deputy prosecutor Dave Maisch sparred about what could and couldn't be asked of the only witness to testify, city Detective Travis Sowers.

Sowers testified that Griggs confessed after turning himself over to police. The detective detailed the shower of .25-caliber bullets that struck Gomez twice in the arms, twice in the legs, once in the torso and once under his chin.

Graff on cross examination attempted to construct a case for self-defense, asking questions about the size of the older boy in comparison to his client and trying to establish that Griggs was backed against the wall of an adjacent sneaker store when he fired the shots.

Maisch objected repeatedly, saying Graff should narrow his focus to stay within the simple purpose of a preliminary hearing, which is to determine if enough evidence exists to further the case to Common Pleas Court.

An exasperated Graff was able to score a couple answers to satisfy his pursuit, when Sowers testified that Gomez had also been carrying a gun and that he apparently fired it.

Police earlier said one shell casing from Gomez's gun was recovered on the ground and a second was jammed in the weapon, which had been reported stolen from Virginia Beach, Va.