Verdict reached in fatal Gaslamp shooting
Lakiesha Mason killed on birthday in 2009
Last Updated: 448 days ago
SAN DIEGO -
Three gang members were convicted Monday of murder and other charges involving a shooting more than three years ago that killed a woman who was celebrating her 21st birthday in the Gaslamp Quarter.
A jury deliberated two days before finding Dontaye Craig, 28, Rashad Scott, 20, and Frederick Roberson, 26, guilty in the Memorial Day weekend 2009 shooting that took the life of LaKiesha Mason and left two men wounded.
Jurors will decide the validity of Roberson's prior convictions in a trial beginning Tuesday.
Each defendant faces more than 75 years to life in state prison when they are sentenced Nov. 30.
"It's been terrible," the victim's mother, Debra Nesby, said outside court."It's like I've been living a nightmare over and over and over again. Actually, it's been hell."
Sam Mason, the victim's father, said, "It's feeling like we finally got some justice for our daughter. It's a sad thing all the way around. Hopefully this will deter some other young men out there from acting up and taking innocent lives."
In addition to murder, the defendants were convicted of attempted murder and assault with a firearm.
A fourth man charged in the shooting, Marlon Johnson, pleaded guilty to lesser charges and testified against his co-defendants.
Deputy District Attorney James Simmons said LaKiesha Mason was shot and killed when she, her sister and a friend stumbled upon a gang fight.
Simmons said Johnson was with the co-defendants when he bumped into a rival gang member outside a Gaslamp club about 2 a.m. on May 24, 2009.
The prosecutor said Roberson punched a member of the rival group, and Craig pulled a .38-caliber handgun and fired several shots. Two men were wounded but survived; Mason was shot in the head and died at the scene.
Surveillance video from a nearby building showed Scott and Roberson walking toward the scene just before the shooting, according to Simmons, who also said DNA found on a hat and hooded sweatshirt left at the scene was linked to Roberson.
Roberson's attorney, Frank Birchak, questioned when his client's DNA got on the hat and the sweatshirt. He urged jurors to closely judge the credibility of witnesses. Scott's attorney, Tim Chandler, said his client had nothing to do with the shooting.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. City News Service contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.