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Kenneth Gleason found guilty of first-degree murder

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BATON ROUGE - In a unanimous decision, 12 jurors have found Kenneth Gleason guilty of first-degree murder after a string of shootings in 2017 that left two people dead. 

The decision came Monday evening after just 30 minutes of deliberation. 

“A most cruel and dangerous game” and a “reign of terror” is how the prosecution painted Gleason’s five-day shooting spree in 2017. Defense attorneys rested their case Monday, prompting the jury to begin deliberating whether to convict the so-called "serial killer."

Gleason is facing a life sentence for the 2017 murder of Donald Smart. He's accused in two other shootings, one resulting in the death of Bruce Cofield.

Prosecutor Dana Cummings said in her closing statements that Gleason treated the shootings like he was hunting human beings—random black men specifically.

The state’s evidence against Gleason consists of phone records placing him in the area of all three shootings, video evidence of him altering the appearance of his car—which was seen at all three shootings—and DNA found on shell casings.

His defense tried to cast doubt that Gleason was the shooter by refuting the car ID’s and trying to poke holes in the state’s DNA analysis. Earlier in the trial, their star witness claimed Gleason was not the man he saw behind the gun.

Gleason will be sentenced Aug. 26, 2021. 


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