Crime - Sacto 911

Sacramento sheriff confirms murder victim testified in ‘barbershop’ trial

A man who was shot and killed Tuesday night in his vehicle near the Arden Fair mall was a key witness in the recent “barbershop” murder trial in Sacramento.

Marquelle “Qeazy” Jones, 24, helped prosecutors establish a motive behind the fatal Dec. 14, 2010, shootout at Fly Cuts & Styles on Stockton Boulevard, identifying defendant Louis Mitchell as having robbed him of his gold grill teeth jewelry, $40 and an eighth of an ounce of marijuana a week or so before the gunfire exploded.

Monique Nelson, 30, was struck by a stray bullet and killed while protecting her 2-year-old son. Another man who participated in the shooting, Marvion Barksdale, 20, also was slain. Four other innocent people as well as a gunman who accompanied Barksdale were injured.

Sacramento County sheriff’s Detective Tony Turnbull confirmed Thursday that the man who was killed Tuesday in the 2000 block of the Alta Arden Expressway was the same Marquelle Jones who testified at the barbershop trial.

“It was Qeazy,” Turnbull said.

Turnbull added that “there is no indication at this point” that Jones’ killing that took place around 9 p.m. Tuesday was in any way related to his trial testimony.

Jones testified about being robbed by Mitchell and about a later beating that Barksdale administered to Mitchell on behalf of Jones in response to the robbery.

Jones also was the half-brother of Barksdale. According to Sacramento County coroner’s records, the two slain men had the same father.

Deputy District Attorney Valerie Brown said at trial that Mitchell and his brother went gunning for Barksdale in the days after the beating.

A jury on Aug. 20 convicted Mitchell, 23, and his brother, Lonnie Orlando Mitchell Jr., 27, of first-degree murder in the case. Co-defendant James Leo Carney III, 35, was convicted of manslaughter. Carney fired the bullet that killed Nelson; his attorney claimed the gunshot came in self-defense while he was under attack by the Mitchells.

A fourth defendant, Larry Dean Jones Jr., 32, was acquitted of all charges.

Two other men, Charles Barksdale, 33, and Dominique Marcell Lott, 31, pleaded guilty to manslaughter charges before trial. Charles Barksdale is a cousin of Marvion Barksdale and Marquelle Jones.

The Mitchells are scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 24.

On Tuesday night, deputies responded to a shooting call in the 2000 block of the Alta Arden Expressway, near Ethan Way in the Arden Arcade area. Marquelle Jones, who apparently had been driving, lost control of the vehicle and crashed into the center median, according to a Sheriff’s Department news release.

Deputies found Jones inside the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Detectives are asking that anyone with information on the shooting call the Sheriff’s Department at (916) 874-5115, or Crime Alert at (916) 443-4357. Tip information can be left anonymously on the Sheriff’s Department website,, by texting 274637 and entering the keyword SSD, or by calling (916) 874-8477.

Related stories from Sacramento Bee