You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks


Welcome to

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on

Palm Beach Central student, 17, mourned; homicide remains a mystery

At the beginning of the school day Thursday, Palm Beach Central’s campus of nearly 3,000 students paused for a moment of silent reflection.

It was for 17-year-old Dalton Dobkins, a senior who was shot and killed in his home Wednesday.

“The kids, as well as the teachers, are definitely struggling with it. He was a fantastic kid that reached kids across the spectrum,” Principal Darren Edgecomb said. “He seemed to have a wide influence on a lot of kids. He seemed to be extremely well-liked.”

Dobkins was found in a residence at The Estates at Wellington Green, near the southwest corner of the mall, by Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputies early Wednesday. PBSO hasn’t released many details about the mysterious crime, but spokeswoman Teri Barbera said the incident is being investigated as a homicide. It is the 71st of the year in the county.

PBSO hasn’t named any possible suspects, and deputies are asking anyone who knows anything to come forward.

There haven’t been any other calls for service at the residence this year, Barbera said. Crime at the complex has been sparse during the past three months. Deputies have only responded to minor incidents like three burglaries from vehicles.

Wellington is typically viewed as a safe area with almost no gun violence. Other than a deputy-involved shooting this year of a man who reportedly refused to drop his knives, there hasn’t been a shooting death in Wellington since a gas station clerk was killed in May of 2014. Two women were also killed in domestic violence cases in 2015, but neither involved a gun.

The Mall at Wellington Green is a busy place, but even it doesn’t have much crime. The most common crime at the mall is shoplifting, and there were less than 200 incidents in 2015.

Supporters have set up a GoFundMe page to help the Dobkins family with funeral costs, whcih has raised more than $2,900.

“He had a strong passion for fishing, and he was preparing himself for the U.S. Marine Corps boot camp scheduled for July,” a portion of the page’s description says.

About 80 people lit candles near the apartment Wednesday night to pay tribute to Dobkins. They described him as a good person, athletic and hardworking.

Palm Beach Central had grief counselors in the school for students who felt like they needed to talk to someone.

Students were meeting with counselors Wednesday before the homicide was confirmed, Edgecomb said, because they had found out about the tragedy in the neighborhood. Those counseling sessions continued Thursday as students attempted to come to grips with the senseless tragedy.

The students have come together to comfort each other, hugging and crying over the loss.

“There have been some emotional displays of affection,” Edgecomb said. “They are grief stricken.”

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Local

UPDATE: One dead after car hits light pole; Australian to reopen soon
UPDATE: One dead after car hits light pole; Australian to reopen soon

UPDATE, 6:30 a.m.: City police confirmed one person was killed when a car hit a light pole overnight. Police said Australian Avenue is scheduled to reopen shortly. Update, 6 a.m. Tuesday: Australian Avenue remains closed after last night’s accident, news partner WPTV Newschannel 5 reports. A car was heavily damaged after hitting a traffic light...
UPDATE: Fire under control at Century Village near Boca Raton
UPDATE: Fire under control at Century Village near Boca Raton

Update 9:30: The fire is under control at this time, according to Palm Beach County Rescue. Original Story: Crews are working a fire at Century Village near Boca Raton, according to Palm Beach County Fire Rescue. Firefighters have located a fire in the third floor storage room of a four-story apartment building in the 55-years-old and older complex...
David Cassidy reveals he has dementia
David Cassidy reveals he has dementia

After a recent concert in California, former teen idol David Cassidy got viral attention for the wrong reasons after footage of his show hit the internet. Cassidy, 66, appeared drunk, confused and disoriented during his Agoura Hills, California, show, where he often slurred his words and forgot the lyrics to his songs. Many assumed that Cassidy...
Anti-Trump protesters outnumber supporters as president departs
Anti-Trump protesters outnumber supporters as president departs

More than 100 protesters turned their backs on President Donald Trump as his presidential motorcade sped on Southern Boulevard toward Palm Beach International Airport Monday — showing President Trump their disapproval with “No 45” signs pinned to the back of their shirts. For many of the protesters, Monday’s event was the third...
More Stories