Deryl Dedmon is charged with running down James Craig Anderson on June 26 with a pickup in what authorities say was a hate crime.
Dedmon initially was charged with murder, but it was upgraded to capital murder when authorities said they uncovered evidence that Anderson was robbed.
Capital murder in Mississippi carries the possibility of a death sentence or life without parole. It's defined as a murder that occurs during the commission of another felony. Authorities say the underlying felony in this case is robbery.
Dedmon is being held without bond. Another teen, John Aaron Rice, is charged with assault in the case.