LawNewz, Inc. reports that two alleged Florida gang members have been convicted of murdering a toddler. Henry “Cracka Jack” Hayes and Kquame “J.B.” Richardson shot a 22-month-old toddler to death while he was sitting in a parked car with his mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. The shooting occurred when the attack was actually aimed at the toddler’s cousin.
The two defendants were tried together but had separate juries. Some testimony was admissible for both men, and other testimony was only admissible against one of them. The juries each heard separate closing arguments from defense attorneys.
Hayes’ jury began deliberations Monday evening and arrived at their verdict shortly after Richardson’s jury was hearing closing arguments in his case. The verdicts were initially meant to be read at the same time, but the judge read Hayes’ after Richardson’s jury began deliberations.
Hayes was identified as the primary shooter by the toddler’s mother. The great-grandmother testified that she cradled the toddler after the shooting, thinking he was only in shock.
Prosecutors claimed the shooting came after months of clashes among local gangs. Online rap videos featuring both defendants were played in court. Some of these videos referenced streets where shootings later actually occurred, and prosecution said this amounted to admissions of guilt.
Both men were tried for first-degree murder using the transferred intent doctrine, which means that another person may have been originally intended for the shooting, but the resulting death of the toddler meant the intent to murder transferred to him.
*Photo credit LawNewz, Inc.