Teen sentenced to four years in prison for gun theft, shooting
An 18-year-old Madison man was sentenced Monday to four years in prison after pleading guilty in September to stealing a gun and playing a role in a shooting in which the gun was used to seriously injure another man.
Jawaun K. Greer, who was 17 on Feb. 6 when Darrick Thompson, 23, shot Michael Coleman, 33, on West Washington Avenue in Madison, said he takes full responsibility for his role in the events that led to the shooting. He apologized to Coleman, who was not present in court, and to his own family “for making a foolish decision.”
“I ask for you to give me another chance at life,” Greer told Dane County Circuit Judge John Hyland.
Greer pleaded guilty on Sept. 25 to felony theft, first-degree reckless injury and first-degree reckless endangerment, all as a party to the crime.
Hyland said that given Greer’s young age, his lesser culpability in the shooting, his acceptance of responsibility and the steps he has taken to continue his education in jail, his sentence would be shorter than one recommended by Assistant District Attorney Daniel Hess and in a state Department of Corrections pre-sentence report.
But the theft of the gun from an unlocked truck in Verona was “for no good purposes,” Hyland said, and the seriousness of the shooting “requires me to send you to prison.”
Greer was the third of three men sentenced in the case. Thompson, who continued to deny after a trial in July that he shot Coleman, received an 18-year sentence in September, while Xavier D. Davis, 22, who drove the men to the shooting scene, received an eight-year sentence, also in September.
According to testimony at Thompson’s trial, the three, along with Roberto M. Rodriguez-Sostre, 22, were in a car following Coleman’s car from Fitchburg to Downtown Madison, believing that Coleman was a rival gang member. Police found he was not a gang member at all. Charges against Rodriguez-Sostre were dismissed early in the case.
Davis parked the car and Thompson walked up to Coleman’s car and opened fire. Coleman wrote in a victim impact statement that he continues to have no feeling on one side of his body because of the shooting. Hess said Coleman still does not know why he was shot. A woman who was in Coleman’s car was not injured.
Hess recommended a nine-year prison sentence for Greer, while Greer’s lawyer, Jason Gonzalez, asked for a two-year sentence.
Greer’s four-year sentence will be shortened by about nine months to credit him for the time he has spent in jail since his arrest. The sentence will be followed by five years of extended supervision.