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CENTENNIAL, Colorado - A 24-year-old Aurora man was sentenced to 42 years in prison for his role in the deadly 2010 drive-by shooting of Malcolm Bernarde Taylor.
On Sept. 13, 2010, Detwan Clayton Irving and two other defendants drove over to the victim's home and fatally shot him while he was outside of it. Irving was falsely told that the victim had disrespected his gang at a party, prosecutors said.
On May 7, 2014, an Arapahoe County jury found the defendant guilty of second-degree murder, conspiracy to commit second-degree murder and second-degree assault causing injury with a deadly weapon -- conspiracy.
Prosecutors said throughout the court proceedings and trial, numerous statements were made by witnesses claiming that they were being threatened because of their testimonies against the defendant. At one point during the trial, one of the prosecution's witnesses temporarily refused to testify on the stand after allegedly being threatened.
"This sentence sends a message to our community that justice will not be derailed by intimidation and pressure from those miscreants who seek to avoid it," said District Attorney George Brauchler. "Here, we stand up for what is right. An Arapahoe County jury found that the defendant was responsible for the brutal murder of a victim who had done nothing wrong. While the sentence will not bring Mr. Taylor back, the defendant will have plenty of time to reflect on his murderous conduct in a cell behind bars."
"Despite the threats impeding Malcolm Taylor from receiving justice, a tireless and aggressive prosecution and investigation resulted in his murderer spending the next few decades in prison," said Chief Deputy District Attorney Brian Sugioka. "Mr. Taylor died a senseless death on September 13, 2010, because the Defendant believed he had disrespected his gang. With this sentence, all the people responsible for Malcolm Taylor's death have been held accountable."
"Gang violence -- especially in our own neighborhoods -- is not tolerated and will be vigorously prosecuted to the full extent of the law," said Deputy District Attorney Victoria Klingensmith. "Many tried to keep Mr. Taylor and his family from receiving justice by intimidating them from telling the truth. Thanks to the courage of our witnesses, the victim and his family will receive justice with this sentence."
Irving was the last of five co-defendants to be held accountable for the murder of Taylor. The evidence showed that Irving was the ringleader of the defendants involved in Taylor's murder, according to prosecutors.
The other four co-defendants are: 19-year-old Vincent Kuciver; 24-year-old Shameek Jamal Bernard Lewis; 21-year-old Nydoni Minnie Lual; and 22-year-old Kelsey Perrin.