Third man in Rayshawn Ransom slaying sentenced to 12 years

A Trenton man who took a plea deal in connection with his involvement in the 2013 slaying of 19-year-old Rayshawn Ransom was sentenced Friday.

Dyquise Leonard had previously pled guilty to one count of attempted murder for which he would be sentenced to 12 years in prison. On Friday a Mercer County Judge imposed the term of 12 years the plea deal called for. Leonard will have to serve 10 years and two months before he is able to be released. He was sentenced concurrently to 5 years on another file.

Rayshawn Ransom

Rayshawn Ransom

“There are certain things that have happened and occurred within my life, and within my family’s life that I can … say ‘Hey, I would like to have justice done today in regards to my son’s life,” Raymond Salter-Ransom, said as he addressed the court. “Because I cannot hug my son, I cannot hold my son, and I can’t look at my son unless I look at pictures … his life was tooken away, my breath was tooken away and so has my wife’s and my other children.”

Ransom asked for justice and demanded the court do what was right.

“I say to you, your honor, to lead by example in reference to this goddamn court,” Ransom said asking the court to excuse his language. “Set an example on behalf of the state of New Jersey, my son is gone. Can’t nobody bring my son back. He [Leonard] can’t bring my son back, because it happened and he was a part of the ordeal that occurred.”

Ransom’s attorney addressed the family stating that it was a very sad day for everyone.

“Sad day? You cannot bring my son back, neither can he.” Ransom yelled in court.

When offered the opportunity to speak, Leonard didn’t offer consoling words.

“I just want to say that the charge I’m copping out to does not have nothing to do with their son whatsoever,” Leonard said. “The weapon was not even found, so.”

Continuing on with the statement that his charge had nothing to do with Ransom’s death, an angered Raymond Ransom let out another outburst. “My son is gone, yo.”

Apparently responding to Ransom, Leonard said “I ain’t had nothing to do with that.”

“My charge is attempted murder. I had not been charged with nothing to do with your son’s death,” Leonard said. “I still feel remorse for him, but the charge I’m copping out for today has nothing to do with the death of his son.”
The judge interjected asking if this testimony was consistent with the plea colloquy.

Assistant Prosecutor Stephanie Katz explained that Leonard had pled guilty to the charge of attempted murder, he had shot a separate weapon during the same time when shots that did kill Ransom were fired.

“It was all in the same incident, [Leonard’s] gun was not attached to the actual projectile that struck and killed Mr. Ransom,” Katz said. “Certainly he’s part of that incident if he could plead to the attempted murder.”

Leonard was charged along with Alton Jones and Marquis Skillman following the shooting death of Ransom, 19, who was gunned down while he sat in a car with friends on Passaic Street.

Jones admitted to the shooting death of Ransom and the murder of Tierra Green, he was sentenced to 38 years in prison on September 9, 2016. Marquis Skillman pled guilty to first-degree robbery in connection with Ransom’s death. Skillman received a sentence of 11 years in prison on the robbery charge.

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