VICTORIA, Texas - After a little over two hours the jury handed down the sentence in the trial for Raheem Jones, charged with the murder of Vonsell Ramirez.
The jury has decided to sentence Raheem Jones to 30 years in prison with a $10,000 fine.
During this trial several family members and friends testified that Jones was a good person who was always known for being “outgoing, strong, confident, and goofy.” Jones was moved to tears as some people took the stand.
The defense attorney Micah Hatley presented his closing statement by saying Jones had never been in trouble before this incident occurred. He went on to say that one witness testified that Jones would give him the shirt off his back because his heart was so big.
The prosecuting attorney Edward Wilkinson started his closing statement by saying he agreed with the defense attorney. All the witnesses that took the stand knew Jones before his junior and senior year in high school.
Wilkinson went on to ask why didn’t any of Jones’ friends that he’s recently been hanging out with testify about his good character? He continued saying, one witness mentioned Jones would give him the shirt off his back, just like Vonsell’s brother took the shirt off his back and wrapped it around Vonsell’s neck to try to save his life as he died in the back seat of the car in his mother’s hands.
After the trial concluded the victim’s mother, Debeira Bates, took the stand to address Raheem Jones directly. She said that the murder of her son has affected her “to the core, and it has really impacted her and her family.” She said Jones took away a part of her that she can never get back.
Vonsell Ramirez has a daughter, and she will never be able to see her father again. Bates explained that it really hurts her because she used to hang out with Raheem’s mother, and they never called or reached out to give her a sincere apology in the fall out of this tragedy. Bates stated that Raheem’s family walks around “with their chest out like they’re bad.” She concluded saying, “I hope you learn from this. If they don’t tell you, I’m telling you I forgive you. I can’t walk around hating you.”
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