The jury has reached a unanimous verdict in the 5 Corner Lotto trial of the shooting death of a convenience store worker.
20-year-old Jalontaye Clay Cleveland and 28-year-old Courtney Trumaine Williams were on trial for the shooting death of 23-year-old Vatsal Patel on November 6, 2016, on Linwood Boulevard.
Cleveland and Williams each face 11 counts that include armed robberies at other stores.
After three weeks at trial and two days of deliberation, the jury has come to a verdict.
Cleveland and Williams were found guilty on the charges of malice murder, felony murder, two counts of aggravated assault, criminal attempt to commit a felony, four counts of armed robbery, and kidnapping.
Victim impact statements were heard before sentencing. The victims, both related to Vatsal Patel, talked about how much they missed him and how they’re lives changed drastically on that day.
They were both sentenced to life without parole for the murder charges and 20 years for each other count. Those will be concurrent.
“I feel like we just lost our life. We lost our life,” Courtney Williams said during his statement.
Both defendants had a chance to plead the court for mercy on their sentencing.. Saying they’d like a chance to be free and see their families again.. Especially since their co-defendants would have that same chance.
“But yall wanna give us life,’ Williams continued.
The defense attorneys say they respect the verdict but don’t agree with it.
“That’s tough for a 28-year-old man to take. Anytime you have a judge that saying you will never ever see your kids other than through a sheet of glass.. So of course he was not happy about it..”
Don Kelly with the Distrct Attorney’s office says the jury came to the right result..
“I feel like they got the appropriate sentence given the fact that they showed no remorse to what they had done.”
So what’s next for the Cleveland and Williams.
“We’ll be back on appeal .. cause there’s no direct evidence that me and Mr. Cleveland are guilty of murder and yall know.. Yall know it Don Kelly.