The defendant, Deanthony Collins, 21, will be sentenced in June by Circuit Judge Julian King. He faces 20 to 99 years or life in prison.
Collins and his accomplice, Darelle Fortner, 26, met with their victim, John Morgan, on Nov. 7, 2008, and decided to purchase some cocaine, according to Assistant District Attorney Scott Brewer. Instead, they pulled over the car to the side of the road, shot Morgan four times and robbed him, then left him for dead. He had been hit in the leg, groin and twice in the chest.
A passing motorist stopped and called an ambulance, Brewer said. Morgan survived thanks to emergency surgery, but still has a bullet lodged in his chest.
Fortner previously pleaded guilty to his role in the crime and is in prison.
It was not immediately clear whether it was Collins or Fortner who actually pulled the trigger. Brewer said the initial theory had been that Collins had the gun, but the witness testimony was sometimes contradictory on this point. In any case, under the legal principle of complicity, both are equally guilty of the crime.
Collins, who did not testify, was represented by attorney Mark Nelson.
When asked for comment after the verdict was read, Assistant District Attorney Bill Barnett, who prosecuted the case with Brewer, said, “Justice will out.”