Saturday, May 8, 2010

A black man has been convicted of the manslaughter of an Ecuadoran immigrant

A black man charged in the fatal beating of an Ecuadoran immigrant has been acquitted of a hate crime and murder but convicted of manslaughter. Despite the split verdict, Hakim Scott faces up to 40 years in prison - and the jury is still deliberating the fate of his co-defendant, Keith Phoenix. Scott and Phoenix were hit with hate-crime charges because victim Jose Sucuzhanay - walking down the street arm-in-arm with brother Romel - was pelted with racial and anti-gay epithets before being bludgeoned. Prosecutors claimed Scott, 26, instigated the Dec. 7, 2008, incident by jumping out of an SUV to hit Jose Sucuzhanay with a beer bottle and chase Romel - but said Phoenix, 30, delivered punishing blows with a baseball bat. The pair were tried together but had separate juries. Scott's deliberated just eight hours before convicting him of first-degree manslaughter, which carries 25 years, and attempted assault, which carries 15 years.

No comments: