DaVontrae Benton guilty of second degree murder
Fri, 30 Mar 2012 20:21:12 GMT —
DaVontrae Benton has been convicted of murder and several other charges for the November 2010 shooting of six-year-old Jonaries Holden in Flint.
The jury deliberated for less than four hours, before returning the guilty verdict around 4:00 p.m.
Benton was convicted of 2nd degree murder, four counts of assault with intent to commit murder and felony firearms charges.
Minutes after the conviction, relatives of Jonaries Holden came out of the courtroom, exhilarated and relieved. And amid public displays of joy - hidden behind the main action - a mother said she's learning to move on.
"Today. I started, I started breathing again,â?? said Jonariesâ?? mother, Marchand Williams. She thanked the jury for giving her closure and putting her son's killer behind bars.
Jonaries' father, Johnny Holden, testified during trial. He said Benton fired a shot at his car, upset Holden owed him $60 for drugs. The bullet killed Jonaries instead - a truth tough to bear.
"It's real hard, to you know, wake up knowing that your kid is gone and you never can hold him again, only thing you can do is just think about him and stuff,â?? Holden said. "That's what hurts the most."
The defense argued Holden's testimony was too inconsistent with physical evidence, but prosecutors pled their case beyond a reasonable doubt.
â??Iâ??m very glad that the jury agreed with us that DaVontrae Benton shot into that car and very tragically killed that little boy,â?? Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said.
â??I'm just very, very excited,â?? Williams reiterated. â??The words can't really express how a relief this is that I know that the man who took my child away will be gone for a very, very long time."
That sense of relief was not lost on Jonaries' eight-year-old cousin Larion.
â??What did you get today?â?? his grandmother asked him.
â??Victory,â?? the boy answered.
â??For my cousinâ??s murder.â??