3 sentenced in killings of 2 in 2009 in Liberty

By Ed Runyan



Three of five people who took part in the Nov. 15, 2009, killings of Wilneice L. Green, 28, and her 14-year-old daughter, Ja-Brajasia, at Green’s home in Liberty received their agreed- upon prison sentences Thursday.

Marquese J. Floyd, 32, of Atkinson Avenue in Youngstown; Denise Jackson, 31, of Trumbull Court, Liberty; and Appollonia Baker, 29, of Miller Street, Youngstown, will leave the Trumbull County jail, where they’ve been for more than three years, and go to state prison.

None spoke at the hearing, and no one from the Green family attended, but Floyd’s attorney, Jeff Limbian, did describe as “patently unfair” the 22-year sentence Floyd received for his role in the crime.

“He gets ... years more than the person who slaughtered two individuals,” Limbian told Judge Ronald Rice of Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.

Limbian was referring to Melvin L. Turner, 39, who received a 19-year prison term in February after pleading guilty to being the triggerman.

Judge Rice said each case has to be considered separately, and Floyd’s sentence “doesn’t seem unreasonable to me.”

Floyd, Jackson, Baker and James M. Christian, 24, of Dale Street, Youngstown, accepted plea agreements two to three years ago. Turner had threatened to take the case to trial but accepted the plea instead.

Chris Becker, assistant Trumbull County prosecutor, said the 19-year sentence was not “the outcome we would want,” but prosecutors were hampered by lack of physical evidence to tie Turner to the killings, and the testimony of his coconspirators would have been suspect because of their history of lying.

Jackson received a 13-year sentence, and Baker got a six-year sentence for being the driver of the car. All three get credit for the three years they’ve spent in the county jail.

Christian is scheduled for sentencing April 25.

Prosecutors said the five went to Green’s Northgate Drive home to kill Semmie Shorter, 38, who lived there, but Turner killed Green and her daughter inside the darkened home when Shorter couldn’t be found. Shorter later committed suicide.

Police said Jackson told Floyd that Shorter needed to “pay” for purportedly sexually assaulting a girl at the Green home a day or two before the killings. But police said they don’t know why Turner killed the Greens because they were never the intended target.

Police say Floyd supplied the AK-47 that Turner used in the killings and was one of three men, including Christian, who went inside the house.

Jackson remained outside, and Baker was the driver. Her attorney, Lou DeFabio, pointed out to Judge Rice that Baker had no previous criminal record, “never entered the house” and didn’t possess a weapon. He said she was the “first to turn herself in” and cooperated with authorities.

At Turner’s sentencing in February, Green’s sister, Tameika Green, said she was “left with a pain, sorrow beyond belief” in losing Wilneice and in having to raise her four surviving children, age 4, 5, 10 and 14.

Becker said getting five lengthy prison sentences is evidence of the “great job by the Liberty Police Department” given the fact that it had no physical evidence such as DNA or fingerprints available.

Don't Miss a Story

Sign up for our newsletter to receive daily news directly in your inbox.