Las Vegas Sun

October 1, 2014

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Incident at MLK parade may have led to slaying

Gwendolyn Jones died last May 25 in a hail of bullets, but new details emerging about the case indicate the events that led to her death began four months earlier -- during a parade to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Six men indicted in connection with Jones' death were arraigned Monday. Joey Clark, 22, Anthony Hampton, 18, and Perry Macklin Jr., 21, are scheduled to go to trial June 10. Jamario Macklin, 17, Corey Johnson, 24, and Jamon Brooks, 22, will go on trial Oct. 21.

Prosecutors have decided not to seek the death penalty against the six, who are alleged to be members of the same gang.

According to grand jury transcripts released Monday, Jones' spine was severed by a bullet while she talked to two young men during a wake for her sister.

Four other people gathered at the West Avenue home were also wounded -- including an 8-year-old girl and Charles Holmes, the man police say was the intended victim.

All but Jones survived their injuries.

North Las Vegas Detective Mike Rodrigues told grand jurors that police suspect Holmes and some of his friends beat Joey Clark and Jamario Macklin unconscious during a confrontation along the MLK Day Parade route Jan. 13, 2001.

Several weeks later, Clark was shot in the arm. He identified Holmes, a rival gang member, as his assailant but declined to press charges.

On May 25, Holmes was sitting on the trunk of a car with Jones' nephew, Renall Nelson, and talking to Jones when occupants inside a black Camaro drove by and opened fire.

Holmes, who received a minor leg wound, has warrants out for his arrest and cannot be located, Rodrigues said. Nelson, who was shot in the hip and finger, testified before the grand jury, but said he could not identify anyone in the car.

"I seen (a passenger) come out the window with the pistol and I was like 'No, not today.' That's when they got to shooting. They hit me first," Nelson said.

Nelson said he didn't think he was the target because they kept firing after he went down.

"Man, it was about 20 shots, for real," Nelson told grand jurors.

Another witness told grand jurors Holmes was the intended target.

The woman said she visited Clark in the hospital after he was shot in April and heard him and Antonio Banks, who has since been slain, plotting to retaliate against Holmes.

"(Clark) said that he knew who it was that shot him and that they would get him," the woman testified.

After the shooting, the woman testified she called Secret Witness because she suspected her car had been used during the drive-by.

"(Banks) showed up with my car keys and told me not to drive my car anywhere. Just to leave my car alone," the woman said. "He wouldn't tell me, you know, why I couldn't drive my own vehicle, so I knew something had happened. And then I had saw on the news about the drive-by that happened on May 25."

Clark, Hampton, Johnson, Brooks and the Macklin brothers face 10 counts each ranging from murder and conspiracy to commit murder to attempted murder and discharging a firearm out of a vehicle to promote, further or assist a gang.

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