Jury recommends 58 years in Lynchburg shooting - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Jury recommends 58 years in Lynchburg shooting

Posted:
By Dave Thompson

UPDATE:

A Lynchburg jury recommended 58 years in prison for a known Bloods gang member on Tuesday after it convicted him on two counts of malicious wounding and related firearms charges and one gang-related charge.

Testifying in the first day of his trial, Orlando DeSean Harvey, 27, admitted Monday to shooting teenagers Marc Washington and Jahvonte Gilbert on the Grace Street bridge on March 20, 2011.

He was charged with the aggravated malicious wounding of Gilbert, the malicious wounding of Washington, two counts of use of a firearm and one count of participation in a criminal street gang.

Washington, 16 at the time, was shot in the hand. Gilbert, then 18, was shot in both feet.

Testifying before Judge Mosby Perrow, Harvey said he fired in self-defense after he encountered a group of young men, one of whom had a firearm.

Gilbert and Washington maintained they were the only two people there. They were leaving a house on Cherry Street to meet Washington’s mother at Gilbert’s house.

Lynchburg Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Chuck Felmlee portrayed the shooting not as self-defense but as retaliation for the murder of Brian Patterson, fatally shot by Gregory Kittrell at the Fraternal Order of Police lodge on Wiggington Road just a month earlier.

Harvey, who admitted his involvement with the Bloods in testimony Monday, was friends with Patterson, whom Lynchburg Police testified also was a known Blood member. Kittrell was sentenced to 21 years in prison for second-degree murder in that case.

During his trial, Kittrell repeatedly was associated with the “Tooley Boys,” a group Felmlee identified as a gang, which he said is known to frequent the Grace Street area.

On Tuesday, Felmlee focused on the testimony of one witness who indicated Harvey had a motto of “you kill one, we kill two,” and that he specifically went to the area looking for revenge against the Tooley Boys.

Washington testified he and Gilbert, his cousin, had been hanging out at Gilbert’s house on Fillmore Street, after Washington’s shift at McDonalds ended while waiting to be picked up.

Washington and Gilbert left the house on Cherry Street, where they went to look at a game system. The pair cut through some shrubbery before hitting the bridge on Grace Street around 11 p.m.

“At the time I did not notice anybody,” Washington said.

Then he felt something like a bee sting on his left hand, turned around and saw his cousin collapse.

“I watched him fall on the ground, watched him get back up, watched him fall down again,” Washington said.

Washington, who testified he has never held a gun, said he watched a man, whom he didn’t know, run backward firing the pistol toward them.

Harvey denied he had any ideas of revenge for Patterson’s killing. He said he went to the area to visit his child and the child’s mother on Franklin Street. He said as he was on the Grace Street bridge, he heard some rustling that he initially thought could be an animal, then heard footsteps.

“I turned around. I seen individuals,” he said.

He said a group of people addressed him and asked him what he was doing in the area. He said he was afraid for his life.

“I seen a firearm. I pulled my firearm and I shot,” Harvey testified.

Defense attorney David Embrey attempted to paint Harvey as a man concerned for his own safety with the right to arm himself, knowing he would be in an area of town that might be hostile to him.

“This whole case really turns on malice,” he said, noting he didn’t believe a man shooting fearfully in self-defense met the condition.

Felmlee emphasized the number of timesHarveychanged the stories he told to investigators, including initially hiding the firearm, then claiming he had been given it by a friend the day after the shooting before eventually admitting his role in the shooting.

The Commonwealth’s witnesses, Felmlee said, gave consistent testimony.

“The truth never changes,” he said.

The jury recommended Harvey serve 30 years in prison and a $10,000 fine on the aggravated malicious wounding charge, 10 years and a $5,000 fine on the malicious wounding charge, three and five years respectively on the firearms charges, and the maximum penalty of 10 years on the gang charge, coupled with a $2,500 fine.

After the trial, Felmlee said in an email the jury’s recommendation was appropriate. He added he hopes the 58-year recommendation “will send a strong message to other gang members, or gang wannabees, that the citizens of Lynchburg will have zero tolerance for ruthless street violence.” 

EARLIER:

After convicting a Lynchburg man in the shooting of two teenagers on Grace Street, a jury on Tuesday recommended he spend 58 years in prison.

Orlando DeSean Harvey admitted shooting Marc Washington and Jahvonte Gilbert on the Grace Street bridge the night of March 20, 2011.

He was charged with aggravated malicious wounding of Gilbert, malicious wounding of Washington, and use of a firearm in both cases along with participation in a criminal street gang.

Washington, who was 16 at the time, was shot in the hand. Gilbert, then 18, was shot in both feet.

Harvey testified Monday, the first day of his two-day trial, that he had fired in self-defense after he encountered a group of young men, one of whom had a firearm.

Gilbert and Washington maintained there were only the two of them, and that they were leaving a house on Cherry Street to get back to Gilbert's house to meet Washington's mother, who was coming to pick him up.

While Harvey maintained he was afraid he was being beset by a rival gang and had to defend himself, Lynchhburg Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney Chuck Felmlee portrayed the shooting as retaliation for the killing of Brian Patterson, who was fatally shot at the Fraternal Order of Police lodge on Wiggington Road in February 2011 by Gregory Kittrell.

Harvey, an admitted Blood gang member, was friends with Patterson. A jury in February recommended Kittrell serve 31 years in prison.

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