The people who were charged with killing XXXTentacion have been found guilty of first-degree murder.
After a month-long trial, a South Florida jury decided on Monday, March 20, that all three suspects, Michael Boatwright, Dedrick Williams, and Trayvon Newsome, were guilty of first-degree murder in the 2018 shooting death of XXXTentacion. All of them were also found guilty of armed robbery with a gun. Right away, sheriff’s deputies put them in handcuffs.
Before the guilty verdict, on March 7, during the long trial’s closing arguments, the lead prosecutor Pascale Achille went over what happened outside of Riva Motorsports on June 18, 2018, in XXXTentacion’s hometown of Deerfield Beach, Fla., that led to the death of the “Moonlight” rapper.
After calling Boatwright, Williams, and Newsome “calculating predators,” Achille showed the jury video footage that, according to the prosecuting attorney, was taken by the three defendants just hours after XXXTentacion was killed and showed each man dancing while showing off a lot of $100 bills.
“This is who they are,” Pascale Achille told the jury, according to Associated Press, as she tried to prove that the people she named did kill XXXTentacion. “This is who they really are. This is what killers do within 24 hours of shooting a person to death and taking $50,000 from him. See how happy they are? Look how happy they are!”
Trayvon Newsome’s lawyer tried to convince the jury that people flashing cash on social media is a common thing that shouldn’t be used to convict the suspects of murder during the defense’s closing arguments.
“Do you hear anybody bragging?” the lawyer for the defense said about the videos that were shown during the prosecutor’s final arguments. “No, you hear music and see guys flashing money and doing stupid things with it. If you look for people flashing money on the Internet, you will find hundreds of people doing it. There’s no point to it. Not unless you can prove that Trayvon Newsome knew he was involved in a murder and a robbery and was showing off the money. The evidence doesn’t point in that direction.”
The media has asked Michael Boatwright, Dedrick Williams, and Trayvon Newsome’s lawyers and state prosecutor Pascale Achille for their thoughts.
Nearly five years ago, on June 18, 2018, XXXTentacion, whose real name was Jahseh Swayne Onfory, was killed when he and his uncle, Leonard Kerr, were leaving Riva Motorsports in Deerfield Beach, Florida. The South Florida rapper also had $50,000 in cash stolen from him.
In the days after XXX’s death, an investigation led to the arrest of the main suspect in the shooting, Michael Boatwright, as well as Dedrick Williams, Trayvon Newsome, and Robert Allen, who were at the time accused of helping him do it.
Allen and Boatwright, Williams, and Newsome were all charged with first-degree murder at first. In August 2022, Allen took a plea deal in the hopes of getting a lighter sentence.
Robert Allen fully admitted to killing XXXTentacion after pleading guilty to second-degree murder and testifying against his co-defendants at the start of their trial last month. Allen said that even though he was with Boatwright, Williams, and Newsome when X was shot, he was against the robbery that turned into a murder from the start.
The defense tried to say that Drake, Ski Mask the Slump God, Migos, and Joe Budden might have been involved in a plot to kill XXXTentacion for money. Robert Allen’s testimony helped disprove that claim.
After being found guilty, Boatwright, Williams, and Newsome must all serve life sentences. Their official sentencing hearing will happen at a later time.