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Published: Friday, 7/15/2011 - Updated: 4 years ago

Toledo man convicted of murder

A Lucas County Common Pleas Court jury found Devan Owens guilty of Romeo Alexander's murder Friday. He faces up to life in prison at sentencing. A Lucas County Common Pleas Court jury found Devan Owens guilty of Romeo Alexander's murder Friday. He faces up to life in prison at sentencing.
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A 22-year-old man faces life in prison after being convicted Friday of killing former Scott High School basketball standout Romeo Alexander.

Devan Owens was found guilty of aggravated murder and aggravated burglary, both with gun specifications, for the Dec. 16, 2009 slaying.

Lucas County Common Pleas Judge Linda Jennings is to sentence Owens next Friday, according to Rob Miller, one of two assistant Lucas County prosecutors who presented evidence. The other was Michael Bahner.

A seven-woman, five-man jury heard testimony from 22 witnesses over three days.

After a half-day of closing arguments Friday, it deliberated fewer than three hours before reaching the verdict.

Mr. Miller said prosecutors were pleased by the “overwhelming” evidence obtained against Owens by Toledo police investigators.

Defense attorney Charles McKinney of Dayton could not be reached.

Mr. Alexander, 24, of 1308 Brookview Drive, was shot while protecting his mother, Latriesha Alexander, at her Rockcress Drive home in southwest Toledo, near Swan Creek Metropark.

Owens pulled out a 9mm, semi-automatic handgun and fired it twice into Mr. Alexander’s body while fighting with him after being chased out of the two-story residence by Mr. Alexander, authorities have said.

The trial began with jurors making a site visit to the crime scene, viewing doors and windows and neighboring houses.

Mr. Alexander went to the neighborhood on the day he was shot to check in on his mother because of a rash of burglaries there.

It is not a neighborhood known for crime, although the number of break-ins occurring then had prompted the victim’s mother to install a security system in her house.

Mr. Alexander was an All-City League guard in 2004, when he averaged18.3 points and 5.6 rebounds a game.

He was working for a window company at the time of his death, someone relatives described back then as a clean-cut, affable man with a big smile.

Mr. Alexander dreamed of becoming a rapper, performing with a group called Triple Threat.

He was close to his mother, who was working at her Rite Aid job when the shooting occurred.

Mr. Alexander had been upstairs since about 8 a.m. on the day of his slaying, but ran down after hearing the front door of his mother’s house kicked in about 11:30 a.m.

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