Teen gets 50 years for 2011 killing in Baton Rouge
BATON ROUGE- A teenager who was 15 at the time he shot and killed another teen, told the victim's family he was sorry in court today.
Branikin Jones pleaded guilty to manslaughter and armed robbery charges in the 2011 killing of Daylon Wheeler. Investigators believe Wheeler was sitting on his front porch when Jones gunned him down.
"May God have mercy on his soul," said Wheeler's mother, Marval Johnson, outside the courthouse.
Jones was tried as an adult and sentenced to 40 years for the manslaughter charge, as well as 50 years for the armed robbery charge. Those sentences will run at the same time, and because it was a crime of violence he'll be forced to serve 85 percent of his sentence.
District Attorney Hillar Moore hopes this case serves as an example to other juveniles who try to cause problems.
"You can book that I'm going to charge any juvenile that kills another unless there's some extenuating circumstance, I'm going to try them as an adult," Moore said. "I'm going to do my best to get them off the street so they can't kill again."
Johnson gave a victim impact statement before sentencing. She wanted Jones to know how important her son was to her.
"The only thing he said was he was sorry but can't bring him back," Johnson said. "That's the statement he made. Of course, I told him I know you can't bring him back, you shouldn't have taken his life because you can't give life back."
The Department of Corrections will determine where Jones serves his time. He will be 63 years old before he is eligible for release.