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Youth offender charged with second degree murder in death

SoVaNow.com / October 30, 2019
A Mecklenburg grand jury has indicted Damian James Ashworth of Buffalo Junction on a charge of second degree murder for his alleged role in the shooting death of Anthony Raekwon Roberts of Clarksville on July 17.

Ashworth, whose identity was not previously disclosed by authorities because he was a juvenile at the time of the slaying, will be tried as an adult. If convicted, he faces up to 40 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000. Under Virginia law his sentence could be as low as five years.

No new court date has been set for Ashworth.

Prosecutors and police have offered few details about the slaying, which took place on Seventh Street in Clarksville. What is known is that Anthony Raekwon Roberts, the victim, had been visiting family at his grandmother’s house in Clarksville and had left the residence moments before he was shot.

Arrested in the aftermath of the killing were Ashworth, then 17, and Hayleigh Hylton of Brodnax, who was 20 years old at the time. Hylton has been charged as an accessory to second degree murder. Police have not said what may have motivated the shooting.

The Oct. 21 Mecklenburg County grand jury indictment marked the first time Ashworth has been identified as the alleged killer.

He continues to be incarcerated at W.W. Moore Juvenile Detention Center in Danville.

Hylton, a 2019 graduate of Park View High School, was held at the Meherrin River Regional Jail until her recent release pending further court appearances. Her next hearing date is Nov. 18 in Mecklenburg County Circuit Court. She is being charged as an accessory after homicide, a Class 6 felony that could result in a prison sentence of between one and five years, or up to 12 months in prison and a fine of $2,500 if reduced to a misdemeanor.

Hylton was initially represented by R. Clinton Clary Jr. of Lawrenceville but it is unclear if he remains the defense attorney of record in the case.

Roberts, an aspiring musician, celebrated his 20th birthday on July 4, less than two weeks before his death.

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Comments

What gives you the right to print a minor's name in the news paper? He is still a minor. Damian James Ashworth's name should not have been put in the paper because he is still a minor. Prove to me that it was okay or I am going to talk to a lawyer.

Comments

Fact-checking could save y’all from a serious lawsuit.
I wonder, if you don’t know the answer, do you just make something up? Feeding the public nothing but garbage.

Comments

When a minor is indicted with a felony charge as an adult that eliminates the legal requirement to not disclose the juveniles name.

Comments

Hey, Shirley, if you are so upset about the name being printed why are you putting it online? Tell us more about your rationale.

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Im quite sure the family of the victim didnt want to see his obituary in the paper because of the senseless act that was carried out by the juvenile whos name is in the paper.

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He was a juvenile but he no longer is.

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He sure is still a minor, he is my son. They can print whatever they want, but leading the public to believe he has turned 18 is fabrication. Among the many other poorly investigated statements in this article.

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Sorry Ms. Sousa, that was my interpretation from reading the article that he was in fact no longer a minor. Again, my apologies.

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I'm glad the world can know the killer of my cousin. Theast thing you need to be worried about us your sons name in this article. I already feel like he is not getting the charge he really deserves. My cousin was unarmed and also tried to run away. Hope your son gets the maximum!!!!!!

Comments

E, I’m very sorry for your loss. I wasn’t aware that you were there and witnesses him trying to run away. Because that would be the only way for you to know that. You weren’t there, and neither was anyone else to SPECULATE what happened.
The evidence will speak for itself and justice for your cousin AND for my family WILL be served. My son is no monster, he’s not in a gang and has never claimed to be. Maybe you should talk to your cousins shot caller and point the blame that way. It was a set up. God bless you and your family.

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Yep the evidence and the witnesses on the scence will prove your punk ass son shot him from while he was in the car. And the fact your defending your son killing an unarmed black male shows his and your character. He came looking for trouble. My cousin ain't go looking for him. Now y'all have a blessed and happy day!!!

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I think the only two people that REALLY knows what happened is the two people mentioned in the article. You can’t trust everything you read in articles like this. I’m not “taking sides” here because it is sad that a young man lost his life. Nobody knows what happened but them. Nobody can blame anybody because nobody knows exactly what happened.

Comments

The fact that yall are so worried about his name being put in papers and online, is really pathetic. An innocent guy was killed for no reason, his family needs justice to be served.


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