Gang Member Convicted in Baby’s Shooting Death Gets 90 Years to Life
COMPTON, Calif. (KTLA) — A teen convicted in the shooting death of a one-year-old boy who was sleeping in his father’s arms was sentenced to 90 years to life in prison Friday.
Donald Dokins, 16, was found guilty of murdering Angel Cortez in Watts on June 4, 2012.
Jurors deliberated for only an hour and a half in April before convicting the teen of murder and attempted murder, along with a gang enhancement.
On the night of the shooting, the baby’s father, Mauro Cortez, was outside his home with friends, holding his infant son.
That’s when Dokins, then 15, rode up on his bicycle and opened fire, according to testimony at the trial.
Cortez was hit in the shoulder. The baby was shot in the stomach and died a few hours later at the hospital.
Dokins, a known gang member, may have mistaken Cortez for a rival gang member, prosecutors said.
Cortez was not part of any gang, according to authorities.
Before the shooting, relatives had reportedly told Cortez to remove the purple shirt he was wearing, because of the color’s association with the Barrio Grape Street gang.
Cortez took the shirt off, but someone in the group was apparently still wearing purple when the shooting happened.
Dokins was arrested three weeks after the shooting. Because he was over 14 years old, he was tried as an adult.
It was expected that Dokins would spend at least the first two years of his sentence in a juvenile facility before being moved to an adult prison.