Defendant Quincy Allen listens to testimony during the opening day of his trial in Lucas County Common Pleas Court. Allen was found guilty of muder with firearm and gang specifications.
Saying the community ought to rest easier at night with Quincy Allen behind bars, Lucas County Common Pleas Judge Gene Zmuda sentenced the young gang member Thursday to life in prison.
Allen, 22, of 1343 Oak Hill Ct., will be eligible for parole after serving 35 years. He was convicted Monday by a jury of murder with firearm and gang specifications and of participating in a criminal gang for the April 19 death of La’Quan Dunbar, 20, who was shot in the back of the head during a fight at the Gas & Express Mart, 2315 N. Detroit Ave.
Allen also was sentenced on an unrelated charge of robbery for a May 15 holdup in which he and Frederick Watson got a ride from a motorist, then pointed a gun at him and robbed him of $100. Watson, 20, was shot to death June 16.
While defense attorney Phil Carlisle asked the court to consider Allen’s youthfulness in formulating a sentence, Judge Zmuda said his “actions and lack of remorse” reflected a hardened criminal.
“With this sentence our community, I think, shall sleep a little more securely knowing that someone without remorse [who] believes he’s above any law or any rule … will be removed from this society and therefore unable to wreak havoc on any of our constituents,” the judge said.
Allen declined to speak when given the opportunity. As he did after the verdict was read, he grinned as he was led from the courtroom.
Mr. Dunbar’s mother, Leslie Williams, told the court that she believed his “evil smile” showed he had no remorse.
“I know I should not hate anyone, but I hate this animal that could be so cold and not act like a human being,” Ms. Williams said. “He is pure evil.”
Prosecutors said throughout the trial that Allen killed Mr. Dunbar in retribution for the 2012 death of his younger brother, Deontae Allen, who was shot in the back by a rival gang member after running away from a robbery.
Ian English, an assistant Lucas County prosecutor, said Quincy Allen’s case put to rest a belief on the street known as “no face, no case.” The theory is that if witnesses to a crime don’t want to testify or don’t show up for court, then prosecutors cannot get convictions.
In Allen’s case, several witnesses who were encouraged or offered money by Allen or his associates not to testify were arrested and bonds placed on them to force them into court for the trial.
“We got the message out that the state is going to make every effort to have its day in court and seek justice for this community and family,” Mr. English said. “If people think that all you have to do is get people not to come of their own choice, those days are over because if they don’t come, we’re coming after them.”
One witness, Marlon Powell, could not be located to testify, but the court allowed prosecutors to play his taped interviews with police in which he said he turned around and saw Allen standing over Mr. Dunbar with a gun.
On surveillance video from the gas station on the night of the murder, Mr. Powell is seen assaulting another individual before confronting Mr. Dunbar. The actual shooting occurred off camera.
Mr. English said he expects a case against Mr. Powell to be presented to the grand jury in the coming days that will “seek high-level felonies for his conduct in the April 19 murder of La’Quan Dunbar.”
Mr. Carlisle, who told the court Allen maintained his innocence in the murder, said he intended to appeal his conviction.
Contact Jennifer Feehan at: email@example.com or 419-213-2134.
Guidelines: Please keep your comments smart and civil. Don't attack other readers personally, and keep your language decent. Comments that violate these standards, or our privacy statement or visitor's agreement, are subject to being removed and commenters are subject to being banned. To post comments, you must be a registered user on toledoblade.com. To find out more, please visit the FAQ.